Data Visualization

Fiscal 50: State Trends and Analysis


About Us

Fiscal 50 is an interactive platform that provides clear, data-driven portraits of state fiscal conditions. Users can view, sort, and analyze data on key trends that shape states’ fiscal health now and over the long term. Fiscal 50 also features research and analysis to help users understand how these trends interact and fit together—and how they relate to real-time developments playing out in state capitols across the country.

Fiscal 50 users can:

  • Explore their state’s data.
  • Compare states with one another or with national or regional benchmarks.
  • Examine state trends over time.
  • Read analyses from experts from The Pew Charitable Trusts about trends and developments in state fiscal and economic policy.

Our story

Decisions made by state leaders have profound and long-term effects on constituents and communities. By securing stable, sustainable state budgets, lawmakers can ensure that key services are reliably funded and that policy priorities are protected, even amid economic downturns. But maintaining budget stability is becoming increasingly difficult because of a growing list of challenges that states must contend with. Among those are costly and frequent natural disasters, aging infrastructure, narrowing revenue streams, shifting demographics, and disruptive new technologies. By providing the research, data, and tools needed to address these challenges, Fiscal 50 can help state leaders better understand the fiscal, economic, and demographic trends that will shape their states’ fiscal futures and make more informed decisions.

Pew has been at the forefront of research on states—providing data and evidence-driven analysis that help empower state leaders to make informed decisions. Fiscal 50 is central to Pew’s work on state budgets and has been a regular source of timely, accessible, and trustworthy information about the fiscal, economic, and demographic trends affecting state budgets since 2013.

Our approach

Fiscal 50 brings together expertise from across Pew and powerful tools of public policy research and reporting to assess state fiscal conditions and explain how unfolding developments may impact states’ long-term fiscal paths. We help state policymakers look beyond their current budgets, size up their progress over time, and easily compare their outcomes with those of neighbors or peers that have similar resources and challenges. We build on data from U.S. government agencies, organizations such as the National Association of State Budget Officers and the Urban Institute, and Pew’s own research. Differences can be expected between certain fiscal data used in this analysis and data compiled and used by states for budgeting purposes. For more information on Fiscal 50’s data, analysis, indicators, or approach, please contact Project Director Melissa Maynard at [email protected].

Meet the full team

Use our stories and graphics

All written content and graphics may be republished in print or online for free. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten and that you attribute stories to “The Pew Charitable Trusts.” Any use online should include a link back to our website and follow Pew’s terms and conditions.

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Where States Get Their Money

FY 2021

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Where States Get Their Money

The portion of state government revenue coming from federal dollars remained inflated by billions in COVID-19 pandemic relief aid in fiscal year 2021. The share increased by less than a percentage point from fiscal year 2020 levels but still set a record at 36.7%.

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How states raise their tax dollars
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How States Raise Their Tax Dollars

FY 2022

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How States Raise Their Tax Dollars

Taxes made up almost half of state government revenue in fiscal year 2022, with two-thirds of states’ total tax dollars coming from levies on personal income (38.2%) and general sales of goods and services (29.5%). Broad-based personal income taxes were the greatest source of tax dollars in 31 of the 41 states that impose them, with the highest share (62.3%) in Oregon and the lowest share (8.8%) in North Dakota.

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Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.