By Matthew Bombyk
As part of the IPUMS mission to democratize data, our User Support team strives to answer your questions about the data. Over time, some questions are repeated. This blog post is an extension of an earlier series addressing frequently asked questions. Maybe you’ll learn something. Perhaps you’ll just find the information interesting. Regardless, we hope you enjoy it!
Here’s one of those questions:
How can I use IPUMS CPS to calculate the Alternative Measures of Unemployment published by the BLS?
Every month the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes a set of Alternative Measures of Labor Underutilization as part of its well-known Employment Situation News Release. A common question we are asked at IPUMS is how to calculate these rates using IPUMS CPS data. The “headline” unemployment figure is known as U-3 and is a straightforward calculation using only the main employment status variable, EMPSTAT. However, the other measures are not quite as simple. Nonetheless, these can be calculated using IPUMS CPS! Using the table below, you can calculate these rates using the public use microdata.