Creating county-level info from the CPS

Hello Ipums Community, good evening.

I am trying to create a dataset derived from the CPS with number of persons working by genderXclass of workerXcountyXMIS since 2018.

I understand that that the CPS only samples a subset of counties. Moreover, in the open data at least have the sample will not have county code due to confidentiality issues.

What would be the best way to go about it? Try to access the Census CPS restricted data? Use ACS (only up to 2020 at the Ipums site)?

Suggestions/new information are welcomed.

Thank you


If you need county-level data, then ACS will be a much better choice than CPS. Even restricted CPS data only contains a subset of counties that were sampled for the CPS, while the ACS has full coverage of the US. For your specific case, it looks like you can find this information at the county level (for all counties) through IPUMS NHGIS. For example Table B24080 will give you “Sex by Class of Worker for the Civilian Employed Population 16 Years and Over” for each county. If that’s all the info you need, then this will be your best choice.

The ACS microdata (available from IPUMS USA) does not identify all counties, since some of them have populations below the Census Bureau’s confidentiality threshold of 100,000 population. However, even in these cases the counties are still sampled, they are just grouped into multi-county units which are captured in the variable PUMA.

Hello, Matthew.

Thank you for your reply. I downloaded the B24080 table from the IPUMS NHGIS. It is possible to get the same information by year up to 2021?

Yes, this table is available for 2018, 2019, and 2021, but not for 2020. Due to data collection issues during 2020, the data released by the Census Bureau that year was limited to a small set of Experimental Data Tables designed to address deficiencies in the 2020 sample due to the COVID-19 pandemic. You can find total estimates for the number of people in each class of worker at that link, but it is only at the state level and not broken down by sex.