Logout / Access Other products Drop Down Arrow
Get live help Monday-Friday from 7AM-7PM ET (12PM-12PM GMT)  •  Contact Us
Check out our new FAQ section!
RSS Feed
FAQ: U.S. - What Is a BLS Labor Market Area?
Thursday, 19 Mar 2009 11:40 ET
By Karl Zandi
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics defines "labor market areas" to standardize and promote comparability for the collection and use of labor force information in administering various government programs.

From the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics document "Labor Market Areas, 2008" (from http://www.bls.gov/lau/lmadir.pdf; also defined within http://www.bls.gov/lau/laugeo.htm):

A general definition for a labor market area is an economically integrated geographic area within which individuals can reside and find employment within a reasonable distance or can readily change employment without changing their place of residence.

Labor market areas are metropolitan areas, micropolitan areas, or small labor market areas. They exhaust the geography of all States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, with the exceptions of Kalawao County, Hawaii, and 18 isolated minor civil divisions (MCDs) in New England.

Labor market area definitions are updated on an annual basis, and changes to area definitions and titles are introduced with the labor force estimates for the following January. In order to maintain a consistent time series, data for labor market areas generally are reconstructed back to January 1990 or as far back as practicable.

The BLS document is attached to this article.

Related ReleaseState Employment and Unemployment
SourceU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
GeographyUnited States
Release DateReference date
21 Jul 2017Jun 2017
18 Aug 2017Jul 2017
15 Sep 2017Aug 2017
20 Oct 2017Sep 2017
17 Nov 2017Oct 2017
22 Dec 2017Nov 2017