The Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program is a federal-state cooperative effort in which monthly estimates of total employment and unemployment are prepared for approximately 7,500 areas: Census regions and divisions, States, Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Metropolitan NECTAS (New England City and Town Areas), Metropolitan Divisions and NECTA Divisions, Micropolitan Statistical Areas and Micropolitan NECTAs, Combined Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Combined NECTAs, Small Labor Market Areas, Counties and county equivalents, Cities of 25,000 population or more, Cities and towns in New England regardless of population. These estimates are key indicators of local economic conditions. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the U.S. Department of Labor is responsible for the concepts, definitions, technical procedures, validation, and publication of the estimates that state workforce agencies prepare under agreement with BLS. The concepts and definitions underlying LAUS data come from the Current Population Survey (CPS), the household survey that is the source of the national unemployment rate. The timing of data availability is controlled by the length of time required to produce and validate estimates.
Standard geographic area definitions based on existing political divisions are used by the LAUS program to determine the specific areas for which estimates are generated. These same definitions are used by other federal and state agencies, enabling comparison and tabulation of data across programs. Standardized definitions also increase the availability of input data for the LAUS program from other statistical or administrative programs.
This dataset contains data for counties and statistically equivalent area along with their Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) codes.
The employed are according to LAUS all persons who, during the reference week (the week including the 12th day of the month), (a) did any work as paid employees, worked in their own business or profession or on their own farm, or worked 15 hours or more as unpaid workers in an enterprise operated by a member of their family, or (b) were not working but who had jobs from which they were temporarily absent because of vacation, illness, bad weather, childcare problems, maternity or paternity leave, labor-management dispute, job training, or other family or personal reasons, whether or not they were paid for the time off or were seeking other jobs. Each employed person is counted only once, even if he or she holds more than one job.
The unemployed persons are all persons who had no employment during the reference week, were available for work, except for temporary illness, and had made specific efforts to find employment sometime during the 4 week-period ending with the reference week. Persons who were waiting to be recalled to a job from which they had been laid off need not have been looking for work to be classified as unemployed.