December 14, 2023
Monthly State Jobs Estimates Are Revised Annually. Each month our office publishes the most recent state employment figures from the the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey. State employment and unemployment rates come from this monthly survey, which is based on a small sample of businesses in the state. As a result, once per year the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does a benchmark revision, updating the monthly CES estimates to match more reliable administrative data from states’ Unemployment Insurance programs.
Federal Researchers Now Publishing Quarterly Revisions. Although the BLS only revises the state-level CES once per year, the underlying data used to revised the CES survey is collected quarterly. Taking advantage of this asynchrony, in 2021, researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia began publishing state-level “early revisions” based on the same underlying data but revised more frequently.
Early Revisions Suggests State Added No Jobs Over Prior Three Quarters. Based on the most recent release of the early benchmarks, payroll jobs remained essentially flat over the 9-month period from September 2022 through June 2023. The official, unbenched payroll jobs increased at an annualized pace of 2.1 percent over that period. The official tallies show the state added 282,000 jobs, while the early revised estimates show a total gain of 6,000 jobs. The figure below shows this divergence, as well as official estimates from July 2023 through today. This most recent data has not yet been rebenched. As such, the figure includes the Early Benchmark Revision for these recent months growing at the same rate as the official CES estimates).