Project #9

National Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI)

Principal investigators

Lars Vilhuber and John Abowd


U.S. Census Bureau, under various agreements.

Short description

The Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI) are local labor market data produced and released every quarter by the United States Census Bureau. Unlike any other local labor market series produced in the U.S. or the rest of the world, the QWI measure employment flows for workers (accession and separations), jobs (creations and destructions) and earnings for demographic subgroups (age and sex), economic industry (NAICS industry groups), and detailed geography (county, Core-Based Statistical Area, and Workforce Investment Area, as well as experimental, unreleased block-level estimates). The current QWI data cover 49 states plus the District of Columbia, and about 98% of the private workforce in each of those states.

We have used the existing public-use data (and only those public-use data) to construct the first national estimates. The national estimates are an important enhancement to existing series because they include demographic and industry detail for both worker and job flows compiled from data that have been integrated at the micro-level by the Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Program at the Census Bureau. The research paper (see below) compares the new estimates to national data published by the BLS from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages and the Business Employment Dynamics series.

Additional resources