Below is an inventory of links to data that can support the analysis within an economic development element. While private economic data sources do exsit, the inventory below includes publicly available data only. County-level data is typically referenced since most economic development data is available and reported at the county level. Where municipal data is also available, it is be indicated in the data links. Reasoning on data source use is provided where necessary. It is advisable to consult with the programs and organizations that provide this data to ensure accuracy and understanding of the data limitations.
Analysis of Major Economic Sectors
County Distribution of Jobs by Type and Industry
Each source of jobs data differs in their coverage of the economy and their differences should be understood before making a selection. Wage and salary (sometimes called payroll) jobs that are covered under the unemployment insurance system are produced by the Maryland’s Quarterly Census of Employment Wages (QCEW) Program.
The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) data includes several sectors of the economy which are not covered by the QCEW data series. Chief among these are proprietors (the self-employed) as well as federal military, railroad, certain non profits and much of the agricultural sector. As such, the job totals from the BEA series will typically be much higher than the QCEW series.
The U.S. Census Bureau provides Zip Code Business Patterns (ZBP) and Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics (LEHD) data. The ZBP identifies the total number of wage & salary private-sector employees for the week of March 12th for a given year. In addition, the ZBP provides the number of establishments by employee size category by NAICs sector. The ZBP data set is limited because it does not include any government employment, and because it is only for one point in time in a given year as opposed to an annual average for a year. Because of these limitations, ZBP data cannot be used in comparison with QCEW or BEA data.
The LEHD OnTheMap application provides sub-county economic data. It allows for the designation of a municipality and generates the number of jobs and workers by NAICs sector in a municipality as well as the characteristics of those workers. Data from this application is available for years 2002 to 2011, but caution should be used if trying to evaluate job changes over this time period becasue the data has increased in accuracy over time. Additionally, federal government employment was first added to the data set in 2010. Learn more about the OnTheMap tool.
One, three and five year median household income estimates, the number of households by income class and poverty rates can be obtained from the American Community Survey. If a county or municipal profile file is used, this information would be under the “Economics” tab. If the five-year data is used, it would be in the “Economics” file. The Maryland State Data Center (SDC) also provides median household income tables for each jurisdiction. Click here for cautions, documentation and guidelines on using ACS data.
One, three and five year educational attainment estimates can be obtained from the American Community Survey (ACS). If a county or municipal profile file is used, this information would be under the “Social” tab. If the five-year data is used, it would be in the “Social” file. Click here for cautions, documentation and guidelines on using ACS data.
Limited information on commuting to work is available from the ‘Economics” tab or file of ACS profiles, including mode of travel and mean travel time. Detailed county-to-county commuting is available from the 2006-2010 ACS data. The Maryland State Data Center has this data in addition to specific county-to-county commutation tables, maps of in and out commuting, and a comparison with 2000 data. Click here for cautions, documentation and guidelines on using ACS data.
The LEHD OnTheMap application provides commutation data via the “Inflow/Outflow” analysis setting. Users should be aware that LEHD commuting data will differ from the census/ACS-based commuting data due to differences in data collection and coverage. In general, the LEHD data will show a smaller number of intra-county commutes, and a higher number of out of state and interstate commutes. Due to these differences, the LEHD data cannot be compared to historical commuting data from the Census (such as 1990 and 2000).
Labor force statistics are available from DLLR and the ACS. DLLR data is available for counties (and nine municipalities). This data is for the civilian labor force, and excludes those that are in the military. The ACS labor force data would have estimates for those in the military also estimates of the labor force (residence based) by occupation and industry. If a county or municipal profile file is used, this information would be under the “Economics” tab. If the five-year data is used, it would be in the “Economics” file. Click here for cautions, documentation and guidelines on using ACS data. Workers (but not labor force) and worker characteristics can also be obtained from the LEHD-on the map application (residence based analysis).