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A housing unit in the CPS is interviewed for four consecutive months and then dropped out of the sample for the next eight months and is brought back in the following four months. So, when the system has been in operation for a full year, 4 of the 8 rotation groups will have been in the survey for the same month, 1 year ago. Matching information and Stata .do files from NBER Working Paper t0247 by B. Madrian and L. J. Lefgren are available for March-to-March matches and can be modified for use in other matches. Technical Paper 63 contains more information about Design and Methodology.

The following discussion assumes familiarity with the use of CPS tapes in other environments and deals only with the NBER specific information. Acquaintance with a serious statistical package or programming language to make use of these files.

SAS, SPSS, and Stata data definition file statements are available for some files. 

All of the data files use MS-DOS line ending conventions. That is, instead of just a line feed after each line (the Unix convention) there is a carriage return and a line feed (the DOS convention). This should not disturb any Unix programs and makes the files more accessible to DOS software. It does change the record length for any program using fixed-length records. Select here for more information, including a table listing the record length and the name of any supplements that may be included with the files.

Current Population Survey Replicate Weights

Updates and changelog

All files use the naming convention: cpsMMMYY.typ (MMM = month, YY = year)

NBER internal users can access the data on a UNIX system at /homes/data/cps or on an NBER PC via Network Neighborhood --> NBER --> home --> data --> cps

Index of Supplements and Their Data Files:

Matched Files

Other CPS data

More CPS data is available at our data page:


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