Extending the Utility of Federal Data Bases. Estimation of Sampling Errors


All of the major statistical agencies estimate sampling errors for their surveys. Since many of the surveys use complex, multi-stage sample designs, estimation of sampling errors is also fairly complex. Even further complications would result from the procedures for enhancing the sample as discussed above; averaging over a number of years, or combining the data from several surveys. Fortunately, software exists for the production of estimates of sampling errors for complex designs that could be adapted to cover averaging over years or combinations of surveys. We therefore see no reason to treat the ability to compute estimates of sampling errors as an impediment to the use of these procedures.