Redesigning the Longitudinal Business Database

SSRN Electronic Journal(2021)

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In this paper we describe the U.S. Census Bureau's redesign and production implementation of the Longitudinal Business Database (LBD) first introduced by Jarmin and Miranda (2002). The LBD is used to create the Business Dynamics Statistics (BDS), tabulations describing the entry, exit, expansion, and contraction of businesses. The new LBD and BDS also incorporate information formerly provided by the Statistics of U.S. Businesses program, which produced similar year-to-year measures of employment and establishment flows. We describe in detail how the LBD is created from curation of the input administrative data, longitudinal matching, retiming of economic census-year births and deaths, creation of vintage consistent industry codes and noise factors, and the creation and cleaning of each year of LBD data. This documentation is intended to facilitate the proper use and understanding of the data by both researchers with approved projects accessing the LBD microdata and those using the BDS tabulations. Institutional subscribers to the NBER working paper series, and residents of developing countries may download this paper without additional charge at
longitudinal business database
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