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Geographic Profile of Employment and Unemployment

Elaine L. Chao; Keith Hall
United States Department of Labor

January 1, 2009

The Current Population Survey (CPS) is the regular monthly survey of about 60,000 households from which the national unemployment rate is derived. (See appendix A for concepts and definitions used in the CPS and appendix B for a description of the estimation procedures.)

The method for determining which annual average estimates of the labor force—by demographic characteristics (age, sex, race, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity) and economic characteristics of the employed and unemployed—to publish in this bulletin is explained in appendix B. Table B-1 lists the minimum bases required for publication for various geographic areas.

Estimates for census regions and divisions are shown in section I, data for States are shown in section II, and limited data for metropolitan areas and cities are shown in section III. Estimates of levels are not provided in section III, because population controls needed to make estimates of levels comparable with those in the other sections of this publication are not available.

Because the estimates are based on a survey rather than on a complete census of the population, they are subject to sampling error. Consequently, error ranges have been calculated in the form of 90-percent confidence intervals and displayed for the unemployment rates in the first table of sections I, II, and III. In addition, appendix B provides tables from which the sampling error ranges can be obtained for the data in other tables in sections I and II.

Separate error tables are not provided for each population group (such as total, white, black or African American, Asian, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity). Instead, one table is used for all population groups for a given labor force characteristic, because differences in sampling errors are usually minimal.


Geographic Profile of Employment and Unemployment 2004