Euro-SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)
National Statistical Institute
|Contact organisation unit|
Labour Market Statistics Department
|Contact person function|
|Contact mail address|
2, P. Volov Str.; 1038 Sofia, Bulgaria
|Contact email address|
|Contact phone number|
(+359 2) 9857 549
(+359 2) 9857 664
(+359 2) 9857 619
|Contact fax number|
|Metadata last certified||31 March 2017|
|Metadata last posted||31 March 2017|
|Metadata last update||31 March 2017|
Annual data from the Labour Force Survey
The Labour force survey is a sample statistical survey carried out through households. The main purpose of the survey is to provide data on labour status of population aged 15 years and over and for the main characteristics of employed, unemployed and persons out of labour force in the Republic of Bulgaria.
The classifications applied in the Labour force survey are harmonised with the international classifications in terms of economic activities, occupations, levels of education. The main classifications used are the following:
All persons aged 15 years and over living in the selected non-institutional households are covered.
|Statistical concepts and definitions|
The Labour force survey provides estimates for the main characteristics of labour market as employment, unemployment, inactivity, occupations, economic activities, working time and other, as well as social-demographic characteristics as sex, age, place of residence (urban/rural), education etc.
The main definitions applied in the survey are in accordance with the recommendation of International Labour Organisation and EU legislation. The definition of unemployment is according to Commission Regulations No 1897/2000.
Employed are persons aged 15 and over who during the reference period:
Unemployed are persons aged 15 to 74 who:
Economically active population (labour force) comprises all employed and unemployed persons.
Activity rate - ratio between the economically active population and the total population of the same age group.
Employment rate - ratio between the employed population and the total population of the same age group.
Unemployment rate - ratio between the unemployed persons and the economically active population.
Duration of unemployment is the duration of the search for employment or the length of the period since leaving last job; whichever period is shorter.
Long-term unemployed are persons who have been unemployed for one or more years.
Long-term unemployment rate - ratio between the long-term unemployed persons and the economically active population.
Persons not in the labour force (inactive population) are persons aged 15 and over who were neither employed, nor unemployed during the reference period. All persons on leave for taking care of children until 2 years of age are also included.
Discouraged persons are persons not in the labour force who want to work but who do not actively look for a job, because they do not believe they will find one.
Working time. Distinction between full-time and part-time work is made according to the subjective declaration of the respondents.
The number of actual working hours per week refers to the main job, incl. paid or unpaid overtime.
Professional status. According to the professional status the employed persons are classified in the following categories:
Economic activity. Economic activity is defined by the type of production or services provided by the local units of an enterprise, where a person works. Employed persons are classified by economic activity according to the NACE.BG 2008. Aggregated economic activity groupings according to nomenclature A21 are used.
Economic sectors. The employed are classified by economic sectors by aggregating the data by economic activity as follows:
Occupations. Occupation is defined by the type of work that the person carries out on the main job during the reference week. Employed persons are classified by occupation according to the National Classification of Occupations and Duties-2011 (1st digit - occupational class), comparable to the International Standard Classification of Occupations - ISCO-08.
Underemployed part-time workers and potential labour force
- actively seeking work during the last 4 weeks ( incl. the reference week) but not available for work in the next 2 weeks;
- found a job to start in less than 3 months and are not available for work in the next 2 weeks;
- found a job to start in 3 months or more;
- are passively seeking work (e.g. waiting for the results of a job interview) during the last 4 weeks and are available for work in the next 2 weeks.
Total population usually residing in Bulgaria, except persons living in collective households.
The whole territory of Republic of Bulgaria.
2003 - 2016
|Unit of measure|
Most results measure number of persons in thousands and the rates - in %. The duration of actual working time is presented in hours.
For every person in the sample the reference period is one calendar week (from Monday to Sunday). Within each quarter the sample is evenly spread over the all 13 calendar weeks.
|Legal acts and other agreements|
The concepts and definitions applied in the Labour force survey are in line with:
|Confidentiality - policy|
|Confidentiality - data treatment|
In accordance with Article 25 of the Law on Statistics Individual data are not published. Dissemination of individual data is possible only in accordance with Article 26 of the Law on Statistics.
Individual anonymous data provided for the purposes of scientific research do not consist any administrative data as personal information and address and do not allow direct identification. Additional aggregation of data is performed for some of the variables.
Data from the Labour force survey are published according to the Release Calendar presenting the results of the statistical surveys carried out by the National Statistical Institute. The main annual LFS results are disseminated by press release and on the NSI website.
|Release calendar access|
The calendar is available on the NSI website: http://www.nsi.bg/en/node/480
Data are disseminated on the NSI website, section Labour Market, and information system INFOSTAT in accordance with the Law on Statistics and European Statistics Code of Practice respecting professional independence and in an objective, professional and transparent manner in which all users are treated equitably.
Accessibility of all users to statistical data and equality of their rights are stipulated in the Regulation for dissemination of statistical products and services by the National Statistical Institute.
|Frequency of dissemination|
|Accessibility and clarity|
Press release for the main Labour force survey annual results is posted on the NSI website (http://www.nsi.bg/en) according to the Release Calendar.
"Employment and unemployment - annual data" - specialised electronic publication
General Publications of the NSI:
Detailed annual results are available to all users on the NSI website under the heading Labour Market, Labour Force Survey, Annual data: http://www.nsi.bg/en/node/6486 and through the information system INFOSTAT.
Individual anonymous micro-data could be provided for the scientific and research purposes by individual request according to the Regulation of submission of anonymous individual data for scientific and research purposes.
An information service could be provided by request, according to the NSI Rules for Dissemination of Statistical Information Products and Services.
|Documentation on methodology|
Annual Quality reports
Assurance of quality of Labour force survey in accordance with Quality management policy and Quality management programme of NSI.
NSI follows the recommendation of Eurostat Task Force on the Quality of the EU-LFS by fulfillment of the national Action Plan.
LFS Quality Report consisting information of different quality aspects is prepared each year.
The main users of LFS statistical data are:
- European Commission - DG Employment and other Directorates
- Eurostat - Labour Market unit and other units
- European Central Bank
- International Labour Organisation
- Ministries and State agencies
- Bulgarian National Bank
- Trade Unions
- Employers' organisations
- Non-governmental organisations
- Research institutions
- Companies, agencies - for own marketing researches or consultancy activities.
The national Labour force survey implements the full set of compulsory variables, according to EU Regulations.
|Accuracy and reliability|
The sample used for the Labour force survey is a two-stage stratified cluster sample which includes about 19.6 thousand households each quarter (representing about 0.65% sampling rate). Due to the sampling approach used in the Labour force survey, the estimation of the parameters obtained from the Labour force survey could vary from those in the population due to sampling errors, errors due to non-response, errors in registration or processing etc.
Coefficients of variation (relative standard errors), standard errors and confidence intervals (i.e. the range of values that 95% of times would capture the true value in the population) are calculated for assessment of stochastic reliability of the estimates for main indicators.
|Timeliness and punctuality|
The main LFS results are released about 2.5 months after the end of the reference year.
The LFS results are released strictly to the Release Calendar.
|Coherence and comparability|
|Comparability - geographical|
Comparability across EU Member States is considered high due to use of harmonised concepts, variables, definitions and classifications.
|Comparability - over time|
Since the beginning of 2003 a quarterly continuous Labour force survey which provides quarterly and annual estimates is implemented. From the same year the harmonised definition of unemployment in accordance with Commission Regulation No 1897/2000 has been applied.
Since the first quarter of 2012 a new weighting procedure has been used in the labour force survey which should be taken into account in use of LFS data. The main differences from the procedure used in previous years are the following:
The discrepancy between current population estimates (used for initial LFS quarterly and annual estimates for 2010 and 2011) and the data from the Population Census as of 1 February 2011 has also impact over the comparability of LFS data. Due to availability of new population estimates based on 2011 Population Census and changes in LFS weighting procedure revised LFS estimates for 2010 and 2011 are produced and published at the NSI website.
In consequence the revised data for 2010 are not fully comparable with those for previous years.
|Coherence - cross domain|
Coherence with population data
The LFS uses the latest available population estimates (by age, place of residence, age group and districts) to gross up sample results. Since 2012 population data used for LFS estimates excluded persons living in collective households (which are out of scope of the survey).
Coherence with employment estimates in National Accounts
National Accounts use different data sources which are combined to obtain the best comprehensive and consistent estimate. In results National Accounts data could differ from the results of each source. For Bulgaria the main difference between LFS and NA refers to Agricultural employment. In the estimation of self-employment in agriculture NA use data based on Agricultural Census and sample surveys, carried out by Ministry of Agriculture and Food.
NA employment data are based on domestic concept (employment in resident production units irrespective of the place of residence of the employee) while LFS gives information on the national concept (i.e. resident employed).
LFS does not cover persons living in collective households, who are included in NA employment estimates.
In contrast to National Accounts persons on leave for taking care of a child until 2 years of age are not considered employed according to LFS.
Coherence with Annual and Quarterly Surveys on employees, hours worked, wages and salaries and other expenditures paid by the employer
The main methodological difference between the two surveys is the coverage of employed persons. The surveys on employee, hours worked, wages and salaries and other expenditures provides data on persons who work under employment contract according to the Labour Code or the State Officials Act, while the Labour force survey covers also persons employed by other type of contract or without formal contract and self employed persons (employers, own account workers and unpaid family workers). The published data on employees by labour contract do not include defence and public security activities.
The existed differences in terms of survey units, reference periods, modes of classifying by economic activities (register/description given by the respondents), principles of territorial treatment (by place of work/by place of living) also influenced on the comparability of results from the surveys.
Coherence with registered unemployment data
The main methodological differences between the LFS data on unemployment and data on registered unemployment provided by National Employment Agency are the following:
The data on economically active population used as denominator for the calculation of unemployment rate is different - in LFS economically active population consists of employed and unemployed which number is estimated through the same survey while for calculation of registered unemployment rate Population Census data for economically active population is used.
|Coherence - internal|
Some of the totals (rows and columns) in tables are not equal to the sum of the components because of the rounding of figures.
|Cost and burden|
The average duration of LFS interview is about 15 minutes per person. The individual duration of an interview depends on the labour status of person and survey wave.
|Data revision - policy|
Revisions of previously released data are usually not performed. By exception revisions may happen after new estimates of population from a Population Census became available.
|Data revision - practice|
Due to availability of population estimates based on 2011 Population Census and changes in LFS weighting procedure revised LFS data for 2010 and 2011 are produced and published at the NSI website.
Source of data is Labour force survey, carried out over a sample of 19.6 thousand households.
|Frequency of data collection|
Quarterly. Annual data are calculated as an average of the four quarters of the year.
Data are collected through paper questionnaire and personal interview with persons (aged 15 or over) from the selected households.
Plausibility checks are performed during the data entry. Additional consistency checks are carried out before publishing of data.
The filled in questionnaires are coded (for economic activity, occupation, place of work, field of education etc.) and entered into computer in NSI regional offices. Data files are sent to NSI, where additional control and weighting is doing. Data are aggregated by different variables (characteristics), tabulated and disseminated.