|Formed||June 27, 1884|
|Jurisdiction||Federal government of the United States|
|Headquarters||Postal Square Building|
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Annual budget||$655 million (2021)|
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a unit of the United States Department of Labor. It is the principal fact-finding agency for the U.S. government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics and serves as a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System. The BLS collects, processes, analyzes, and disseminates essential statistical data to the American public, the U.S. Congress, other Federal agencies, State and local governments, business, and labor representatives. The BLS also serves as a statistical resource to the United States Department of Labor, and conducts research measuring the income levels families need to maintain a satisfactory quality of life.
BLS data must satisfy a number of criteria, including relevance to current social and economic issues, timeliness in reflecting today's rapidly changing economic conditions, accuracy and consistently high statistical quality, impartiality in both subject matter and presentation, and accessibility to all. To avoid the appearance of partiality, the dates of major data releases are scheduled more than a year in advance, in coordination with the Office of Management and Budget.
See also: United States labor law
The Bureau of Labor was established within the Department of the Interior on June 27, 1884, to collect information about employment and labor. Its creation under the Bureau of Labor Act (23 Stat. 60) stemmed from the findings of U.S. Senator Henry W. Blair's "Labor and Capital Hearings," which examined labor issues and working conditions in the U.S. Statistician Carroll D. Wright became the first U.S. Commissioner of Labor in 1885, a position he held until 1905. The Bureau's placement within the federal government structure changed three times in the first 29 years following its formation. It was made an independent (sub-Cabinet) department by the Department of Labor Act (25 Stat. 182) on June 13, 1888. The Bureau was then incorporated into the Department of Commerce and Labor by the Department of Commerce Act (32 Stat. 827) on February 14, 1903. Finally, it was transferred under the Department of Labor in 1913 where it resides today. The BLS is now headquartered in the Postal Square Building near the United States Capitol and Union Station.
Since 1915, the BLS has published the Monthly Labor Review, a journal focused on the data and methodologies of labor statistics.
The BLS is headed by a commissioner who serves a four-year term from the date he or she takes office. The most recent Commissioner of Labor Statistics is William W. Beach, who was assumed office on March 28, 2019  Dr. William Beach was confirmed by the United States Senate on March 13, 2019. William Beach's Senate Confirmation.
Erica Groshen, who was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 2, 2013 and sworn in as the 14th Commissioner of Labor Statistics on January 29, 2013, for a term that ended on January 27, 2017. William Wiatrowski, Deputy Commissioner of the BLS, was serving as Acting Commissioner until the next commissioner, William Beach was sworn in.
Commissioners of Labor Statistics (1885 to present):
|Portrait||Commissioner||Took Office||Left Office|
|Carroll D. Wright||January 1885||January 1905|
|Charles P. Neill||February 1905||May 1913|
|George Hanger (Acting)||May 1913||August 1913|
|Royal Meeker||August 11, 1913||June 1920|
|Ethelbert Stewart||June 1920||June 1932|
|Charles E. Baldwin (Acting)||July 1932||July 1933|
|Isador Lubin||July 1933||January 1946|
|A. Ford Hinrichs (Acting)||January 1946||July 1946|
|Aryness Joy Wickens||July 1946||August 1946|
|Ewan Clague||August 1946||September 1965|
|Arthur Ross||October 1965||July 1968|
|Ben Burdetsky (Acting)||July 1968||March 1969|
|Geoffrey H. Moore||March 1969||January 1973|
|Ben Burdetsky (Acting)||January 1973||July 1973|
|Julius Shiskin||July 1973||October 1978|
|Janet L. Norwood||May 1979||December 1991|
|William G. Barron Jr. (Acting)||December 1991||October 1993|
|Katharine Abraham||October 1993||October 2001|
|Lois Orr (Acting)||October 2001||July 2002|
|Kathleen Utgoff||July 2002||July 2006|
|Philip Rones (Acting)||July 2006||January 2008|
|Keith Hall||January 2008||January 2012|
|John M. (Jack) Galvin (Acting)||January 2012||January 2013|
|Erica Groshen||January 29, 2013||January 27, 2017|
|William J. Wiatrowski (Acting)||January 2017||March 2019|
|William Beach||March 13, 2019||Present|
Statistics published by the BLS fall into four main categories:
Data produced by the BLS is often categorized into groups of states known as Census Regions. There are four Census Regions, which are further categorized by Census Division as follows:
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