The Labour Force Survey (LFS)
The Labour Force Survey (LFS) is a household based survey. All individuals 15 years and over in the selected households are subject of the labour force survey.
The sample is based in a two-stage sampling procedure. In the first stage are selected the geographical areas with a proportional probability to the size of the enumeration area. In the second stage within each geographical areas (once selected in the first stage) are selected a fix number of households by equal probability systematic sampling method. The sample size is 7,900 households for each quarter.
For the LFS is used a rotational sampling design, whereby a household once selected for interview, is retained in the sample for a total of five consecutive quarters. The same household is scheduled to be interviewed exactly after 13 weeks apart, so that the fifth interview takes place one year after the first.
Data collection in the fieldwork is spread during all months of the year. The gathered data refers to a specific reference period named reference week.
The reference week is the calendar week which starts on Monday and finishes on Sunday before the interview day. For the labour force survey data weighting procedure is used the population calculated based on the 2011 Census of Population and Housing , and on the demographic events (births and deaths) provided by the General Directory of Civil Status.
The sampling weights calculation follows several steps and takes into account the sample design, adjustment for the household level no-responses, and the calibration with the demographic data.
Main variables of Labour Force Survey:
- Unemployment rate;
- Employment rate;
- Labour Force participation rate;
- Summary table of labour market indicators estimated based on the Quarterly Labour Force Survey.
Employed are considered all the persons who have worked even for one hour with a respective salary or profit during the reference week. As employed are considered also all persons who were receiving a salary or wage while they were in training during their work. Employed are also considered all persons temporarily not at work during the reference week for some reasons: (1) maternity leave, illness, injury or temporary disability and expect to return to work, education / training directly related to the actual work; (2) salaried employees absent from work for some reasons other than the above that (a) lack of the duration is three months or less, and the person is not a seasonal worker or (b) the person takes 50% or more salary; (3) the selfemployed who intend to return to the business / farm / or professional practice; (4) workers not being paid who expect to return to work in three months or less.People who work on their small farm, who do not sell their products, but produce only for self-consumption, are considered as employed.
Unemployed comprise persons who during the reference week were: 1. without work, i.e. neither had a job nor were at work (for one hour or more) in paid employment or self-employment;
- currently available for work, (were available before the end of the two weeks following the reference week; 3. actively seeking work, (had taken specific steps in the four week period ending with the reference week to seek paid employment or self-employment) or who found a job to start later, (within a period of at most three months).
The following are considered as specific steps:
- Having been in contact with a public employment office to find work;
- Having been in contact with a private employment agency to find work;
- Applying to employers directly;
- Asking friends, relatives, unions, etc., to find work;
- Placing or answering job advertisements;
- Studying job advertisements;
- Taking a recruitment test or examination or being interviewed;
- Looking for land, premises or equipment;
- Applying for permits, licences or financial resources.
Working age population is the population between 15-64 years old.
Labour Force includes employed and unemployed persons.
Non-economically active population comprises all persons who are not classified as employed or unemployed (pupils/students, housekeepers, in a compulsory military service, retired, disabled, discouraged unemployed).
The employment rate is the proportion of employed 15-64 years compared to the working age population.
The unemployment rate is the ratio of the unemployed to the labour force.
Labour force participation rate is the proportion of the labour force compared to the working age population.