CREATING A CBP LESSON
STEVE.DOIG@ASU.EDU
LESSON OVERVIEW
•  Discuss Census Bureau as a rich source of business/
economic data.
•  Download county-level economic se...
LESSON GOALS FOR STUDENTS
•  Learn about Census Bureau business data as a
source of story ideas.
•  Learn to find local ec...
PREPARATION
•  Download raw tables from Census
•  Prepare a spreadsheet that has two different years of
data side by side....
WWW.CENSUS.GOV/ECON/CBP/INDEX.HTML
WWW.CENSUS.GOV/ECON/CBP/INDEX.HTML
PICK STATE, THEN COUNTY
GET THIS TABLE
SAVE AS A CSV FILE
OPEN RAW TABLE IN EXCEL
SELECT, COPY,
THEN PASTE INTO A NEW WORKSHEET
PASTE 2011 AND 2007 SIDE BY SIDE
DELETE “FIRST QUARTER PAYROLL”
COLUMNS
FORMAT TO MAKE IT READABLE;
ADD 2011 AND 2007 TO THE VARS
ADD NEW COLUMNS FOR LESSON
EXCEL CALCULATIONS
•  Find number change in number of employees for
each sector
•  Find number change in annual payroll by...
FORMULAS FOR LESSON
ANSWERS
PATTERNS TO EXPLORE
•  What was the economy-wide change in total
employees, payroll and establishments between
the two per...
OTHER IDEAS
•  Calculate each sectors’ share of the total economy
in both periods. Who is gaining and who is shrinking?
• ...
Business Journalism Professors 2014: Creating a CBP Lesson by Steve Doig
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Business Journalism Professors 2014: Creating a CBP Lesson by Steve Doig

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Steve Doig presents "Creating a CBP (County Business Patterns) Lesson" during the Reynolds Center for Business Journalism's annual Business Journalism Week, Jan. 3, 2014. Doig is the Knight Chair in Journalism, specializing in computer-assisted reporting, at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Arizona State University.

The annual event features two concurrent seminars, Business Journalism Professors and Strictly Financials for journalists.

For more information about business journalism training, please visit http://businessjournalism.org.

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Business Journalism Professors 2014: Creating a CBP Lesson by Steve Doig

  1. 1. CREATING A CBP LESSON STEVE.DOIG@ASU.EDU
  2. 2. LESSON OVERVIEW •  Discuss Census Bureau as a rich source of business/ economic data. •  Download county-level economic sector data on payroll, employees and establishments for two different time periods (like pre- and post-recession.) •  Use Excel to calculate useful measures – totals, differences, percents and percentage change – across time. •  Discover how different sectors of the local economy have changed across time.
  3. 3. LESSON GOALS FOR STUDENTS •  Learn about Census Bureau business data as a source of story ideas. •  Learn to find local economic data about industry sectors with County Business Patterns from Census. •  Learn to use Excel spreadsheet to calculate sums, differences, percents and percentage change. •  Learn to use results of calculations to spot trends in the data.
  4. 4. PREPARATION •  Download raw tables from Census •  Prepare a spreadsheet that has two different years of data side by side. •  Format the numbers and text to make them more readable. •  Delete the “first quarter payroll” columns (why? kind of redundant to annual payroll.) •  Delete “total for all sectors” row (why? So students can calculate the totals themselves.) •  Add variable names to be calculated during the lesson. (or have students do that.) •  Save and put somewhere for students to download during lesson.
  5. 5. WWW.CENSUS.GOV/ECON/CBP/INDEX.HTML
  6. 6. WWW.CENSUS.GOV/ECON/CBP/INDEX.HTML
  7. 7. PICK STATE, THEN COUNTY
  8. 8. GET THIS TABLE
  9. 9. SAVE AS A CSV FILE
  10. 10. OPEN RAW TABLE IN EXCEL
  11. 11. SELECT, COPY, THEN PASTE INTO A NEW WORKSHEET
  12. 12. PASTE 2011 AND 2007 SIDE BY SIDE
  13. 13. DELETE “FIRST QUARTER PAYROLL” COLUMNS
  14. 14. FORMAT TO MAKE IT READABLE; ADD 2011 AND 2007 TO THE VARS
  15. 15. ADD NEW COLUMNS FOR LESSON
  16. 16. EXCEL CALCULATIONS •  Find number change in number of employees for each sector •  Find number change in annual payroll by sector •  Find number change in total establishments by sector •  Find percentage change in number of employees for each sector •  Find percentage change in annual payroll by sector •  Find percentage change in total establishments by sector
  17. 17. FORMULAS FOR LESSON
  18. 18. ANSWERS
  19. 19. PATTERNS TO EXPLORE •  What was the economy-wide change in total employees, payroll and establishments between the two periods? •  Which sectors gained/lost the most in absolute terms? •  Which sectors gained/lost the most in percentage terms?
  20. 20. OTHER IDEAS •  Calculate each sectors’ share of the total economy in both periods. Who is gaining and who is shrinking? •  Calculate the “average income” by sector (payroll*1000/employees). Correct for inflation by using the CPI. Any real growth/loss? •  Explore change in the size of establishments by using the bottom of the CBP table. •  If you want to focus on a particular sector, go back to the CBP website table and click on “detail”. Download that resultinto Excel and do similar calculations.

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