I’m looking at marital status and hours of work of the spouse for ASEC samples and find some inconsistencies. For example, variable
uhrsworkly_sp (hours of work of the spouse last year)
serial 41938 in years 2007 and 2008. (I understand that they are different individuals, I’m just using the same serial and pernum for the example below.)
- In 2007,
uhrsworkly_sphas a value of 999, and
marst(of the reference person) is 1 (married). That looks fine, it could be the case that the spouse never worked last year.
- But in 2008,
uhrsworkly_sphas a value of 50, yet
marstis 6 (never married/single). If the person was never married, how is it possible that
Situations like 2. above show up in 2.77% of my extract cps_00024. How should I interpret that? does the label “never married/single” mean “never married” or “single”, with “single” being interpreted as currently single but could have been married before? or is that an error in the data? I noticed that those inconsistencies only show up in my data starting from 1995. Was there a coding change then?