Economic News Release

USDL 09-0735
Contact: Stacey Standish For Release: Immediate
202-691-5902 Wednesday, June 24, 2009


BLS MARKS ITS 125TH ANNIVERSARY

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is commemorating its 125th anniversary this month. Congress passed legislation establishing the Bureau in 1884, and President Chester A. Arthur signed the bill into law on June 27 of that year. Carroll D. Wright, the Bureau’s first Commissioner, took office in January 1885. Keith Hall, the current Commissioner of Labor Statistics, is only the 13th since the agency’s inception. BLS has been part of the U.S. Department of Labor since the Department was established in 1913.

Over the past 125 years BLS has been a leader in pioneering, refining and disseminating critical measures of consumer and producer prices, employment and unemployment, compensation and benefits, productivity, and workplace safety. BLS also has long been a national leader in producing career guidance information and the occupational projections on which it is based.

On June 25, BLS will post on its Web site www.bls.gov a Spotlight on Statistics feature highlighting trends in some of the Bureau’s longest-running and newest data series. On June 26, BLS will hold a commemorative event for its employees with featured speakers. The lead article in the upcoming June 2009 issue of the Bureau’s Monthly Labor Review will focus on developments in the Bureau’s programs since its 100th anniversary 25 years ago.

ABOUT BLS: BLS is the principal fact-finding agency for the Federal Government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics. It collects, processes, analyzes and disseminates essential data that are used by the public, policymakers, the U.S. Congress, other Federal agencies, State and local governments, businesses, and labor organizations, as well as by the media, educators and students, and investors.

In the preparation of its data and analyses, BLS adheres to principles of objectivity and impartiality, timeliness, relevance, and transparency. It has continuously utilized changing technology to collect data from businesses and households in an efficient and secure manner. It publishes a large and continuous volume of statistics and reports on a wide range of topics, responds to thousands of inquiries, and provides interactive databases and other Web-accessible tools on its Internet site www.bls.gov .

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has approximately 2,400 employees in its National Office in Washington, D.C., its 6 Regional Offices, and in smaller offices around the country. Its staff includes economists, statisticians, information technologists, and data collectors, among other occupations. Its budget for fiscal year 2009 was $597 million.

Last Modified Date: June 24, 2009

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