On January 11, the U.S. Census Bureau released the latest American Community Survey (ACS) three-year estimates, based on surveys done in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Using three years of data allows estimates to be generally valid for areas with populations of 20,000 or more people. In contrast, one-year data only are provided for areas of 65,000 or more people (See Memo, 10/1/10). In December 2010, the bureau released five-year data valid for areas with as few as 1,500 people (See Memo, 12/17/10), but users will find these three-year data preferable when seeking information on areas with 20,000 to 65,000 people.
In addition, the ACS will provide housing, income and demographic data annually. Previously, these data were collected every ten years as part of the decennial Census.
To access the new data, visit American FactFinder at: http://www.census.gov/acs/www/