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Estimates by Firm Size Using the CES Survey
*Nathan Clausen, Bureau of Labor Statistics 
Christopher Manning, Bureau of Labor Statistics 

Keywords: Size Class Employment, CES Methodology

The Current Employment Statistics (CES) program, conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), surveys approximately 440,000 establishments in order to provide detailed industry data on employment, hours, and earnings of workers on nonfarm payrolls. The authors have been researching the use of CES survey data to produce industry estimates by firm size. This paper first details the research done to develop methodologies used to produce CES estimates by firm size. This includes defining size classes, determining firm size, additivity across size classes, forecasting net birth/death residuals, seasonal adjustment, and the creation of a historical series of CES size class estimates. Next, the paper covers several issues addressed by the developed methodology. CES considered the adequacy of the sample for size class estimates along with movements of firms between size classes to understand how this might impact estimate reliability. Finally, the paper analyzes the time series produced in the research. The research suggests that the introduction of size class estimates would provide a valuable and reliable addition to what is currently published by the CES program.