The Labour Force Survey sample consists of eight rotation groups, therefore each month one rotation group is added to the sample (the incoming rotation group) and one rotation group leaves the sample.
Extensive quality assurance of the September 2016 Labour Force estimates identified data for the incoming Queensland rotation group was considerably different in its labour force characteristics compared with the rest of the Queensland sample, reflecting a higher degree of sampling variability in September 2016.
To ensure the quality of the latest Labour Force figures, released on 20 October 2016, the ABS made the decision to reduce the influence of the incoming Queensland rotation group as part of the standard estimation method.
This reduced the influence of 580 households of the 4,600 Queensland sample; or around 2 per cent of the total Labour Force sample of 26,000 households. The ABS will review this one Queensland rotation group when October data are collected and analysed next month.
The ABS remains confident that its labour force estimates provide an effective picture of the Australian labour market. The ABS Labour Force Survey is a large 26,000 sample, with high response rates (93 to 95 per cent), and a well established set of methods that enable us to respond to unusual movements in the data.
Labour and Income Branch