IRS: 4.7 million made at least $200,000

June 2, 2014: 6:24 PM ET
NEW YORK (CNNMoney)

Close to 5 million tax filers reported adjusted gross income of at least $200,000 in 2011, according to data released Monday by the IRS.

That represents 3.2% of all federal income tax returns.

The vast majority ended up owing U.S. income tax. Roughly 1.8 million paid between 15% and 20% of their income in taxes. Nearly 1.5 million paid between 20% and 25%. And about 900,000 paid more than 25%. Most Americans' effective tax rates are well below 15%.

Not every top-AGI household owed money, however.

Of the high-income returns, 19,563 of them -- or 0.4% -- had no U.S. income tax liability. That's thanks largely to tax deductions, exclusions and credits, all of which combined can eliminate what is owed to Uncle Sam.

Related: What the top 1% pay

But because AGI doesn't cover all income, the 19,563 returns don't reflect all high-income households that owed nothing, said Roberton Williams, a fellow at the Tax Policy Center.

For instance, a high-income household may bring in $500,000 a year, but $400,000 of it comes from tax-exempt income, and therefore is not counted as AGI. And various tax breaks may reduce or eliminate the tax owed on the remaining $100,000.

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