BLS restricted data characteristics
- All BLS restricted data available to researchers are based on released data. Pre-release or embargoed data are not available
for researcher access.
- The types of identifiers available will depend on the BLS
restricted dataset(s) required for the project. Please contact RDA_Admin@bls.gov if you have questions prior to submitting your application.
- Certain datasets have particular access, availability, and/or
quality limitations. Please see any notes listed below the dataset
title on the restricted data category pages linked below.
BLS restricted data categories
Note: If you only require data from the public use files, you do not
need to apply for access.
Employment and Unemployment
Compensation and Working Conditions
Prices and Living Conditions
- Consumer Price Index
- Availability: CPI restricted data are available back to
- International Price
- Producer Price Indexes
- Consumer Expenditure
- Accepted CE researchers must obtain Special Sworn Status (SSS)
through the Census Bureau even though access is only available onsite
at the BLS. Researchers will receive instructions for the process if
their project is approved. BLS must receive confirmation from the
U.S. Census Bureau that a researcherís SSS has been approved before
the researcher is permitted to access CE restricted data. The U.S.
Census Bureau clearance takes approximately four weeks from when it is
Special Data Considerations
BLS accepts only as many research projects for onsite access as
resources (space, facilities, staff time, etc.) can accommodate. Depending
on the demand for restricted data access and/or resource availability,
BLS may institute a queue (activation of new projects occurs as current
projects are completed) or a waiting list (activation of new projects on
hold until further notice) for approved access to certain datasets.
*A queue is in effect for projects requiring restricted
Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) data access with a
current estimated wait time of two years. As current projects
are completed, approved projects in the QCEW queue will be activated in
the order in which they were approved.
SIC to NAICs Conversion
In 2002, the BLS transitioned from using the Standard Industrial
Classification System (SIC) to the North American Industry Classification
System (NAICS). Introduced in 1997, NAICS was the product of a
collaborative effort between the United States, Canada, and Mexico. A
classification system shared across the three countries allows direct
comparison of economic data across borders in North America. NAICS codes
are not related to SIC codes; rather NAICS is a completely redesigned way
of coding industries. NAICS uses a six-digit hierarchical coding system
to classify all economic activity into twenty industry sectors. This
six-digit hierarchical structure allows greater coding flexibility than
the four-digit structure of the SIC. BLS restricted historical data files
for time periods before and including 2002 may be incomplete or
unavailable. If you would like more information about available
historical data for a particular dataset, please see the Contact BLS
page. For more information about the NAICS conversion, NAICS codes, and
the impact on BLS data, see https://www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm
Last Modified Date: July 22, 2019