Finding Local Jobs Stories in BLS Data by Tami Luhby


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Tami Luhby presents "Finding Local Jobs Stories in BLS Data," a free, one-hour webinar hosted by the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism.

For more information about free training for journalists, please visit

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Finding Local Jobs Stories in BLS Data by Tami Luhby

  1. 1. Finding Local Jobs Stories in BLS Data Tami Luhby Senior Writer, CNNMoney
  2. 2. Today’s Agenda Familiarize yourself with BLS Understand the terms used Learn how to access the dataThink how to incorporate stats in stories
  3. 3. Overview of BLSData the bureau collects Organization of data Regional officesWays of accessing data
  4. 4. Basic terms Unemployment/employment Labor force Employment population ratio Labor force participation rateSeasonally/non-seasonally adjusted
  5. 5. How to use BLS data in stories Monthly releases Data points in trend/feature articles Digging through data to find stories
  6. 6. BLS Homepage
  7. 7. National: Monthly jobs report Two surveys: Payroll and household Number of jobs added/lost (P) Unemployment rate (H) Industry breakdown (P) Long term unemployment (H)
  8. 8. National: Monthly jobs report Demographics from household survey Race Age Gender Education
  9. 9. Other National Info Hours and earnings Weekly earnings by occupation Weekly hours workedMinimum wage – by industry/state
  10. 10. Story ideas The 86 million invisible unemployed Fewer young adults hold jobsWomen leaving workforce in record numbersWorkers’ wage gains lag pace of inflation
  11. 11. Subject areas
  12. 12. State and local: Monthly reportsUnemployment data by state/metro/county Employment/labor force Quit hit: Look at the dinosaur
  13. 13. State and local: Unemployment Industry breakdown Changes over time
  14. 14. State and local: Demographics Only available by annual averages Age Race Education
  15. 15. Data screen
  16. 16. State and local data: Employment Industry breakdown Some statewide/some metro Earnings Economy at a Glance
  17. 17. Story ideas Odd dynamic propels Ore. jobless rate to No. 2Howard County earnings down, but still better than state average Part Time Cleaner Survives by Constant Work Wage gains not matching job gains in Miami
  18. 18. State and local: Employed Quarterly reports with more data Automotive repair to waste collection All employees/establishmentsTotal wages, av. weekly wages, av. annual pay
  19. 19. State and local: Occupations 800 occupations for 640 areas One occupation over multiple areas Multiple occupations in one area Downside: comes out once a year
  20. 20. State and local: Occupations Employment numbers Average hourly wage Annual 90th percentile wage Fun facts: highest/lowest paying jobs
  21. 21. Hot jobsTop 30 jobs employment growth/declines 2010-2020 Growth by education level
  22. 22. What else is out there? JOLTS Mass layoffs Green jobs
  23. 23. Story ideas Nurse demand high 3.1 million green jobs number casts wide netColorado experienced 12 mass layoffs in April Boston salaries higher than nations average
  24. 24. Know the code A lot of unpublished data Call BLS helplineGet answers on data questions
  25. 25. Contacts BLS PR: Gary Steinberg(202) 691-5902/ National Unemployment (202) 691-6378 State & Local Unemployment (202) 691-6392 National Employment (202) 691-6555 State & Local Employment (202) 691-6559
  26. 26. Summary Find trendsBolster stories with stats Navigate the maze Call BLS for help