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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Why are there revisions to the jobs numbers?

Workers' Compensation premiums are usually estimated based on anticipated payroll numbers. As those change so does the cost of workers' compensation premiun costs. Basically they are both subject to retroactive audits to verify accuracy. Today's post was shared by BLS-Labor Statistics and comes from

Why are there revisions to the jobs numbers?

By Thomas Nardone, Kenneth Robertson, and Julie Hatch Maxfield

At the beginning of each month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the change in payroll employment for the previous month. This estimate of jobs gained or lost over the month is closely watched by policymakers and those who work in financial markets and the media.

When the estimate is revised in subsequent months, however, data users sometimes perceive a very different picture of the job market than what was initially reported. Data users frequently ask why the number was revised. The short answer is, the revised estimate includes additional information that was not available at the time of the initial release information that makes the revised estimate more accurate.

This Beyond the Numbers article explains the data collection process that BLS conducts every month to produce the estimate of U.S. employment change. The article will also clarify why BLS releases revisions to the initial release, so that users will better understand the change, if any, in the data.

Ready or not?

The estimate of employment change is based on a monthly survey of about 560,000 worksites, selected to represent the millions of businesses throughout the country. (For simplicity, we will refer to worksites as businesses even though many individual businesses provide data for multiple worksites.) In the survey sample,...

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