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Labour Force Survey

Volume 87: debated on Wednesday 27 November 1985

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asked the Paymaster General (1) when the latest labour force survey was published; and when the next is expected to be published;(2) if he will make it his policy not to answer parliamentary questions using information collected in the 1984 labour force survey before the survey itself has been published; and if he will make a statement;(3) when the labour force survey 1984 and the revised labour force survey 1984 will be published.

Preliminary results from the 1984 labour force survey were published in the May 1985 issue of Employment Gazette. These results were revised when the official estimates of the mid-1984 population became available; and a note in the July 1985 issue of Employment Gazette announced that revised results—which differ only slightly from the preliminary results—were available from my Department. An article comparing the survey estimate of people seeking work with the monthly count was published in the October issue of Employment Gazette and further articles on selected topics are in preparation. Meanwhile, information from the survey is regularly used to answer parliamentary questions and other requests for data.The office of population censuses and surveys (OPCS) also publishes selected results from the survey, first in a monitor and later in a report which includes a technical description of the survey. I understand that a monitor presenting 1984 results will appear early next year and OPCS plans to publish a report covering the 1983 and 1984 surveys next June. The OPCS report on the 1981 survey was published in 1982.Labour force survey data are also frequently used in the Manpower Services Commission's labour market quarterly reports.Copies of all the publications mentioned above are held in the Library.It is my policy to provide hon. Members with the most up-to-date information possible in reply to parliamentary questions. Estimates from the labour force survey are therefore used as soon as the survey results have been checked.