Logout / Access Other products Drop Down Arrow
Get live help Monday-Friday from 7:00AM-6:00PM ET (11:00AM-10:00PM GMT)  •  Contact Us
Check out our new FAQ section!
RSS Feed
New Geos: France - Metro Areas
Thursday, 27 Oct 2011 12:06 ET
By Elissa Adams
October 2011 -- We have defined 12 metropolitan areas for France as conterminous with departments and regions (NUTS 3 and 2), per ESPON 1.4.3.

For purposes of the Moody’s Analytics estimated and forecast data products, we have established geography codes for metropolitan areas in France. These are defined by the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) as aggregates of communes (LAU 2). However, the source publishes insufficient time series data at this granularity, so we have resorted to definitions published in the final report of the ESPON Project 1.4.3. which uses department (NUTS 3) and region (NUTS 2) data as proxies.

The 12 metro areas are as follows.  We have omitted Grenoble because neither of the possible proxy geographies are suitable: Its corresponding department (Isère) is too large, and data at the LAU 1 level is insufficient.

  • Bordeaux
  • Lille
  • Lyon
  • Marseilles
  • Montpellier
  • Nantes
  • Nice
  • Paris
  • Rennes
  • Rouen-Le Havre
  • Strasbourg
  • Toulouse

The ESPON study considered metropolitan areas in 29 European countries. ESPON 1.1.1 produced a list of functional urban areas (FUAs) based on population in standardized NUTS-type areas; ESPON 1.4.3 made corrections to this list and added the concept of a morphological urban area (MUA), or core, such that a FUA consists of a core plus a surrounding labor pool. This is akin to the OMB's methodology for U.S. core-based statistical areas.


Table 1 of 1. Metropolitan areas in France. We define each of our metropolitan areas as conterminous with departments (NUTS 3) and regions (NUTS 2) when of comparable size.

France has a national geo code of IFRA, all codes for its geographic subdivisions use IFRA as a prefix, and all Moody’s Analytics metro area codes feature the letter “M.” Each of the 12 areas is identified as IFRA (underscore)M(letter)(letter)(letter), and may be retrieved en masse by using the basket geo wild card IFRA_M^^^.

Geo Code
Geo Type NUTS
IFRA_MBOR Bordeaux Metropolitan Area    
IFRA_GIR Gironde Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MLIL Lille Metropolitan Area
IFRA_NOR Nord Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MLYO Lyon Metropolitan Area
IFRA_RHO Rhône Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MMAR Marseilles Metropolitan Area
IFRA_BDR Bouches-du-Rhône Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MMON Montpellier Metropolitan Area
IFRA_HER Hérault Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MNAN Nantes Metropolitan Area
IFRA_LAT Loire-Atlantique Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MNIC Nice Metropolitan Area
IFRA_AMA Alpes-Maritimes Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MPAR Paris Metropolitan Area
IFRA_IF Île de France Région NUTS 2
IFRA_MREN Rennes Metropolitan Area
IFRA_IEV Ille-et-Vilaine Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MROU Rouen-Le Havre Metropolitan Area
IFRA_SMA Seine-Maritime Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MSTR Strasbourg Metropolitan Area
IFRA_BRH Bas-Rhin Département NUTS 3
IFRA_MTOU Toulouse Metropolitan Area
IFRA_HGA Haute-Garonne Département NUTS 3