Low-Income and Low-Skilled Workers Involvement in Nonstandard Employment. Current Employment Statistics (CES)


The establishment payroll survey, known as the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, is administered to a monthly sample of nearly 400,000 business establishments nationwide. Employment is the total number of persons on establishment payrolls employed full or part time who received pay for any part of the pay period which includes the 12th day of the month. Temporary and intermittent employees are included, as are any workers who are on paid sick leave, on paid holiday, or who work during only part of the specified pay period. Data exclude proprietors, self-employed, unpaid family or volunteer workers, farm workers, and domestic workers.(65)

Data from the CES survey are used for only limited analysis in this research because, although they have the advantage of a long time series of data, they lack occupational and demographic detail. More specifically, the CES data are derived from establishment-level surveys and are based on aggregate earnings and hours for workers at each establishment. The only breakout by occupation is for production/non-production workers and the only demographic breakout is for males and females. Consequently, there is no information about workers at risk of welfare recipiency. Also, these series classify workers by establishment--so the definition of a temporary worker, which is based on an industry definition, is conceptually different from that in the CPS. Here, employees themselves may be temporarily assigned to outside customers, but any individual employee may be long term and hold many temporary assignments.