Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) 2004 Panel (ICPSR 4517)

Published: May 11, 2009

Principal Investigator(s):
United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census


Version V1

This data collection is part of a longitudinal survey designed to provide detailed information on the economic situation of households and persons in the United States. These data examine the distribution of income, wealth, and poverty in American society and gauge the effects of federal and state programs on the well-being of families and individuals.

There are three basic elements contained in the survey. The first is a control card that records basic social and demographic characteristics for each person in a household, as well as changes in such characteristics over the course of the interviewing period. These include age, sex, race, ethnic origin, marital status, household relationship, education, and veteran status. Limited data are provided on housing unit characteristics such as the number of units in the structure, tenure, access, and complete kitchen facilities. The second element is the core portion of the questionnaire, with questions repeated at each interview on labor force activity, types and amounts of income, and participation in various cash and noncash benefit programs for each month of the four-month reference period. Data for employed persons include number of hours and weeks worked, earnings, and weeks without a job. Nonworkers are classified as unemployed or not in the labor force. In addition to providing income data associated with labor force activity, the core questions cover nearly 50 other types of income. Core data also include postsecondary school attendance, public or private subsidized rental housing, low-income energy assistance, and school breakfast and lunch participation. The third element consists of topical modules, which are a series of supplemental questions asked during selected household visits. Topical modules include some core data to link individuals to the core files. For more information on this study, see the SIPP Web site.

Information about child care is located in the topical modules for Waves III, V, VI, and VIII.

  1. The Wave I Topical Module covers recipiency and employment history.
  2. The Wave II Topical Module includes work disability, education and training, household relationships, marital, migration, and fertility histories.
  3. The Wave III Topical Module covers medical expenses and utilization of health care, work-related expenses and child support, assets and liabilities, real estate, shelter costs, dependent care, vehicles, value of business, interest earning accounts, rental properties, stocks and mutual fund shares, mortgages, other assets, and child well-being.
  4. The Wave IV Topical Module covers adult well-being, work schedule, taxes, child care, and annual income and retirement accounts.
  5. Data in the Wave V Topical Module describe child support agreements, school enrollment and financing, support for nonhousehold members, adult and child disability, and employer-provided health benefits.
  6. The Wave VI Topical Module covers medical expenses and utilization of health care, work-related expenses, child support paid and child care, poverty, assets and liabilities, real estate, shelter costs, dependent care, vehicles, value of business, interest earning accounts, rental properties, stock and mutual fund shares, mortgages, and other financial investments.
  7. The Wave VII Topical Module covers retirement, pension plan coverage, annual income, taxes, and retirement accounts. Variables on informal caregiving, such as who received unpaid care and how long they were cared for, are located in a separate topical module file.
  8. The Wave VIII Topical Module covers welfare reform, child well-being, and child care.

United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census. Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) 2004 Panel. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2009-05-11.

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote

2003-10 -- 2004-04 (Wave I)

2004-02 -- 2004-08 (Wave II)

2004-06 -- 2004-12 (Wave III)

2004-10 -- 2005-04 (Wave IV)

2005-02 -- 2005-08 (Wave V)

2005-06 -- 2005-12 (Wave VI)

2005-10 -- 2006-04 (Wave VII)

2006-02 -- 2006-08 (Wave VIII)

2004-02 -- 2004-05 (Wave I)

2004-06 -- 2004-09 (Wave II)

2004-10 -- 2005-01 (Wave III)

2005-02 -- 2005-05 (Wave IV)

2005-06 -- 2005-09 (Wave V)

2005-10 -- 2006-01 (Wave VI)

2006-02 -- 2006-05 (Wave VII)

2006-06 -- 2006-09 (Wave VIII)

Due to software limitations, we cannot provide Stata files for this collection.

A multistage stratified sampling design was used. One-fourth of the sample households were interviewed each month, and households were interviewed at four-month intervals. All persons aged 15 years and older who were present as household members at the time of the first interview were included for the entire study, except those who joined the military, were institutionalized for the entire study period, or moved from the United States. Original household members who moved during the study period were followed to their new residences and interviewed there. New persons moving into households of members of the original sample were also included in the survey, but were not followed if they left the household of an original sample person.

The resident population of the United States, excluding persons living in institutions and military barracks.





survey data

computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI)

telephone interview



2009-03-30 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed consistency checks.
  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.
  • Standardized missing values.

2009-05-11 The bookmarks in the User Guide were updated.

Each SIPP file contains a number of alternative sets of weights for use in data analysis. The different sets of weights are needed to cater to the different possible units of analysis and the different time periods for which survey estimates may be required. Users of these data are encouraged to read through the User Guide for further discussion of methods by which to obtain weighted statistics and for guidance with the use of these methods for proper analysis of these data.


  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

  • The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented.