The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a unit of the
United States Department of Labor The United States Department of Labor (DOL) is one of the executive departments of the U.S. federal government. It is responsible for the administration of federal laws governing occupational safety and health, wage and hour standards, unemplo ...
. It is the principal fact-finding agency for the U.S. government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics and serves as a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System. The BLS collects, processes, analyzes, and disseminates essential statistical data to the American public, the U.S. Congress, other Federal agencies, State and local governments, business, and labor representatives. The BLS also serves as a statistical resource to the United States Department of Labor, and conducts research measuring the income levels families need to maintain a satisfactory quality of life. BLS data must satisfy a number of criteria, including relevance to current social and economic issues, timeliness in reflecting today's rapidly changing economic conditions, accuracy and consistently high statistical quality, impartiality in both subject matter and presentation, and accessibility to all. To avoid the appearance of partiality, the dates of major data releases are scheduled more than a year in advance, in coordination with the
Office of Management and Budget The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is the largest office within the Executive Office of the President of the United States (EOP). OMB's most prominent function is to produce the president's budget, but it also examines agency programs, poli ...


The Bureau of Labor was established within the Department of the Interior on June 27, 1884, to collect information about employment and labor. Its creation under the Bureau of Labor Act (23 Stat. 60) stemmed from the findings of U.S. Senator Henry W. Blair's "Labor and Capital Hearings," which examined labor issues and working conditions in the U.S. Statistician Carroll D. Wright became the first U.S. Commissioner of Labor in 1885, a position he held until 1905. The Bureau's placement within the federal government structure changed three times in the first 29 years following its formation. It was made an independent (sub-Cabinet) department by the Department of Labor Act (25 Stat. 182) on June 13, 1888. The Bureau was then incorporated into the Department of Commerce and Labor by the Department of Commerce Act (32 Stat. 827) on February 14, 1903. Finally, it was transferred under the Department of Labor in 1913 where it resides today. The BLS is now headquartered in the Postal Square Building near the
United States Capitol The United States Capitol, often called The Capitol or the Capitol Building, is the seat of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, which is formally known as the United States Congress. It is located on Capitol Hill a ...
and Union Station. Since 1915, the BLS has published the ''
Monthly Labor Review The ''Monthly Labor Review'' (''MLR'') is published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a unit of the United States Department of Labor. It is the principal fact-finding agency for the U.S. government ...
'', a journal focused on the data and methodologies of labor statistics. The BLS is headed by a commissioner who serves a four-year term from the date he or she takes office. The most recent Commissioner of Labor Statistics is William W. Beach, who was assumed office on March 28, 2019 Dr. William Beach was confirmed by the United States Senate on March 13, 2019
William Beach's Senate Confirmation
Erica Groshen, who was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 2, 2013 and sworn in as the 14th Commissioner of Labor Statistics on January 29, 2013, for a term that ended on January 27, 2017. William Wiatrowski, Deputy Commissioner of the BLS, was serving as Acting Commissioner until the next commissioner, William Beach was sworn in.

Past Commissioners

Statistical reporting

Statistics published by the BLS fall into four main categories:


* U.S. Consumer Price Index * Producer Price Index * U.S. Import and Export Price Indices * Consumer Expenditure Survey

Employment and unemployment

Current Population Survey The Current Population Survey (CPS) is a monthly survey of about 60,000 U.S. households conducted by the United States Census Bureau for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS uses the data to publish reports early each month called the Em ...
(The "Household Survey") ** The American Time Use Survey * Current Employment Statistics (The "Establishment Survey") ** Payroll Employment ** JOLTS report - Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey ** Economic geography ** Salary Data * Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) ** List of U.S. states by unemployment rate * Current Employment Statistics State and Area program * The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) * The Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) * The Business Employment Dynamics (BED) program * Ten year occupational employment projections * Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics, called OES until recently * Mass Layoff Statistics--discontinued in 2013

Compensation and working conditions

* National Compensation Survey ** Employment Cost Index * Workplace Injury and Fatality Statistics


* Labor productivity, aggregate and by industry * Multifactor productivity * State labor productivity

Statistical regions

Data produced by the BLS is often categorized into groups of states known as Census Regions. There are 4 Census Regions, which are further categorized by Census Division as follows: Northeast Region * New England Division: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. * Middle Atlantic Division: New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. South Region * South Atlantic Division: Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. * East South Central Division: Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Tennessee. * West South Central Division: Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas. Midwest Region * East North Central Division: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin. * West North Central Division: Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. West Region * Mountain Division: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. * Pacific Division: Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington.

See also

* Alternative employment arrangements *
Bureau of Economic Analysis The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) of the United States Department of Commerce is a U.S. government agency that provides official macroeconomic and industry statistics, most notably reports about the gross domestic product (GDP) of the United ...
* Career Guide to Industries * Data.gov * Economic reports * Index of Leading Indicators * Job Creation Index *
Monthly Labor Review The ''Monthly Labor Review'' (''MLR'') is published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a unit of the United States Department of Labor. It is the principal fact-finding agency for the U.S. government ...
* National Income and Product Accounts *
Occupational Outlook Handbook The ''Occupational Outlook Handbook'' (OOH) is a publication of the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics that includes information about the nature of work, working conditions, training and education, earnings and job ou ...
* U.S. Census Bureau * USAFacts


Further reading

* Joseph P. Goldberg and William T. Moye
''The First 100 Years of the Bureau of Labor Statistics''
Bulletin No. 2235. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1985. * William J. Wiatrowski
"BLS at 125: Using historic principles to track the 21st-century economy"
''Monthly Labor Review'', June 2009, pp. 3–25.

External links

Records of the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the National Archives (Record Group 257)

Bureau of Labor Statistics
in the
Federal Register The ''Federal Register'' (FR or sometimes Fed. Reg.) is the official journal of the federal government of the United States that contains government agency rules, proposed rules, and public notices. It is published every weekday, except on fe ...

Publications of the BLS
available on
FRASER Fraser may refer to: Places Antarctica * Fraser Point, South Orkney Islands Australia * Fraser, Australian Capital Territory, a suburb in the Canberra district of Belconnen * Division of Fraser (Australian Capital Territory), a former federal ...

Bulletins of the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics
dating back to 1895
Local Area Unemployment Reports
{{DEFAULTSORT:Bureau Of Labor Statistics 1884 establishments in the United States Federal Statistical System of the United States National statistical services Official statistics Statistical organizations in the United States Unemployment in the United States