Status:Closed    Asked:Feb 23, 2018 - 11:05 AM

Help using spmcapxpns and weights in Stata

Extremely novice Stata and IPUMS user here. I downloaded 2012 - 2017 annual samples using and capped child care expenditures from the supplemental poverty measures to try and study changes in child care costs across time. First, are capped costs correct to use? And also, if there's a Stata expert on staff, I can't for the life of me figure out how to weight spmcapxpns properly using spmwtin Stata.


Do you have the same question? Follow this Question

Voted Best Answer

Wouldn't say I'm a Stata expert but I think I know enough to help you out.

First, if you want just child care expenses, use SPMCHXPNS ( The SPMCAPXPNS combines both work expenses and childcare expenses and then caps that value. The capping procedure is a but more complicated but the overriding logic is that these expenses shouldn't exceed the reported earnings of the lowest earner in the family. You can find this in the appendix of the SPM report. (

Regarding weighting, the SPM variables are calculated at the SPM family unit level. You'll want to bring in SPMFAMUNIT ( and select one person per SPM family unit (or figure out another way of alloting the child care expenses at the individual level, if you're trying to stick with individual-level analysis). If you do analysis at the SPM level, you'll use SPMWT. If you do individual-level, use ASECWT.

To use the weights, I typically use:

svyset [pweight=ASECWT]

svy: mean SPMCHXPNS

This may be clearer:

Hope this helps!


Feb 23, 2018 - 02:38 PM

Report it


There is no oberservation for same individual between 1976 December and 1977 ...
IPUMS International error message - Page you were looking for doesn't exist
Is there a list of occupations with corresponding SEI scores attached, from t...
Question about IND1990 for not in the labor force
I am researching the city of Buxton, Iowa in 1910. How do I get data showing ...
When will ACS 2017 be available on IPUMS? (it has been released by Census)
Login   |   Register

Recently Active Members

View More »

Share |