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Government Documents - Department of Labor: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Guide to the Department of Labor and its subsidiary agencies. Publications cover topics such as employment and unemployment, earnings, price indexes, labor laws, fair employment, women and minority workers, and child labor.

About the agency

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) was created within the Bureau of Labor in 1885 shortly after the Department was created. It is "the principal Federal agency responsible for measuring labor market activity, working conditions, and price changes in the economy. Its mission is to collect, analyze, and disseminate essential economic information to support public and private decision-making." (BLS web site)

Internet resources

Our holdings

Government Documents holds an extensive collection of BLS publications, including the following series:

  • Occupational outlook handbook (L 2.3/4:) Learn about careers,earnings, educational requirements, and employment prospects for hundreds of jobs.
  • Bulletin (L 2.3:) Statistical and topical reports about a wide variety of labor issues.
  • Career guide to industries (L 2.3/4-3:) Describes occupations and prospects for employment in major industries.
  • Monthly labor review (L 2.6:) Magazine with articles about national and international labor issues.
  • Employment and earnings (L 2.41/2:) Local area labor force data, hours, and earnings.
  • National compensation survey-wages/Occupational compensation survey (2.122/) Surveys of wages in specific metropolitan areas.
  • Occupational employment statistics  In 2011, the Area wages survey/Occupational compensation survey was replaced by the OES program survey.  This provides detailed information on area wages for over 800 occupations. 
  • Career Outlook (L 2.70/4:) Formerly Occupational outlook quarterly, this is a magazine with articles about jobs, careers, and employment.
  • CPI detailed report (L 2.38/3:) Consumer price index for the purchase price of a representative selection of goods and services.
  • PPI detailed report (L 2.61:) Producer price indexes measure the change over time of selling prices received by producers.
  • Older BLS documents are available in the U.S. Congressional Serial Set (UHM Login required).

Additional documents covering 1910-1932 are available in the Executive Branch Documents microfiche set. 

We also have a variety of general publications, pamphlets, and other BLS materials, as well as Congressional hearings, documents, and reports about labor in the U.S.  Please contact a government documents librarian if you have questions about our holdings.

Subject Guide

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Gwen Sinclair
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Additional resources