FAQs > Labor Market Information > LMI Definitions

Frequently Asked Questions About Labor Market Information

Definitions

  1. What is a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)?
  2. What is a Micropolitan Statistical Area (MC)?
  3. What does seasonally adjusted mean?
  4. What does BLS stand for and what type of data is available?
  5. Why is there a difference between the employed in the labor force and the nonfarm wage and salary employment figures?
  6. What is covered employment?
  7. What is NAICS?
  8. What is the civilian labor force?

  1. What is a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)?

    An MSA is a geographic area comprised of a parish (or county) with a central city (or twin cities) of 50,000 inhabitants or more, plus contiguous parishes that have close economic and social relationships with the central parish. Louisiana has eight multi-parish MSAs. Whether or not a parish is included in an MSA is determined by commuting patterns derived from the latest census reports.

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  2. What is a Micropolitan Statistical Area (MC)?

    An MC is a geographical area comprised of a parish containing a central city of at least 10,000 but less than 50,000 inhabitants and contiguous parishes that are socially and economically integrated with the central city.

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  3. What does seasonally adjusted mean?

    Seasonally adjusted applies to monthly labor force and industry employment data at the statewide level that has been adjusted to minimize the changes in a time series which result from normal annual occurrences such as Christmas, summer vacations, and weather patterns. It enables data users to see fluctuations better in a trend that are caused by unusual occurrences (i.e. a plant closure). Seasonally adjusted data is available at the statewide level. Currently all MSA and parish labor force figures and nonfarm wage and salary figures are not seasonally adjusted. The New Orleans MSA will have seasonally adjusted labor force figures on the BLS Web site in the future.

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  4. What does BLS stand for and what type of data is available?

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is one branch of the United States Department of Labor. R&S is able to get monthly U.S. labor force data, the consumer price index, and various other labor reports from the BLS information services section. Their data can also be accessed from the Web site: http://stats.bls.gov.

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  5. Why is there a difference between the employed in the labor force and the nonfarm wage and salary employment figures?

    The estimated number of employed in the labor force represent those individuals 16 years old and over by place of residence (census data) who are working or actively looking for work. The nonfarm employment figures represent an employer-based survey and reflect estimated jobs by place of work. These figures are more reliable when looking at the economic situation of the state or of an MSA because you can see what industries are growing and compare current to historical employment levels. For example, the data can show how many jobs have been added in mining or services for the last year compared to 10 years ago; thus, more detailed analysis can be achieved with this data series.

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  6. What is covered employment?

    Covered employment refers to those employers who fall under the coverage of the state and federal unemployment insurance programs and pay unemployment taxes on their workers. In Louisiana, some of those employed by religious organizations, fully commissioned salespersons, and elected and appointed officials are not covered by these laws.

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  7. What is NAICS?

    NAICS is an acronym for North American Industry Classification System and is an industry classification system that groups establishments into industries based on the activities in which they are primarily engaged.

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  8. What is the civilian labor force?

    The civilian labor force is that portion of the population, age sixteen or older, which is employed or unemployed and actively seeking employment during the week of the 12th of each month. The civilian labor force is the total (or sum) of the employed plus the unemployed.

    Employed
    Members of the labor force who worked for pay or profit, or had a job from which they were temporarily absent because of illness, vacation, labor dispute, or other reasons not reflecting a shortage of work, or who worked fifteen hours or more as unpaid workers in an enterprize operated by a member of the family.
    Unemployed
    Members of the labor force who did not work but were seeking work or were awaiting recall from layoffs or the beginning of a new job within thirty days.
    Unemployment Rate
    The number of unemployed persons expressed as a percentage of the labor force.

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