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To provide estimates of revenue and other measures for most traditional service industries. The United States Code, Title 13, authorizes this survey and provides for mandatory responses.


Companies that primarily provide services to individuals, businesses, and governments (NAICS 51, 5231, 52392, 52393, 532, 54, 56,62, 71, 81). This survey also covers the Transportation and Warehousing sector (NAICS 484, 492, and 493). Industry coverage and detail have been expanded since 1982, and include most personal, business, automotive, amusement and recreation, social, health, and other professional services. In 1991, use of expanded 1987 SIC classifications began.  Covered industries accounted for about 20% of the Nation's 1994 Gross Domestic Product.  The new North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) is being used for the first time with the 1999 survey to collect data for the Service Annual Survey (SAS).  The scope of the Service Annual Survey has been broadened to encompass the old Annual Survey of Communication Services and the old Transportation Annual Survey. With the implementation of NAICS, approximately 150 additional service industries are being covered.


Collected data include tax and organizational status; operating revenue for both taxable and tax-exempt firms and organizations; sources of revenue and expenses by type for selected industries; operating expenses for tax-exempt firms; and selected industry-specific items.  In addition, starting with the 1999 survey, e-commerce data will be collected for all industries, and export and inventory data will be collected for selected industries.


Annually since 1982; reported data are for activities which take place during the calendar year. Prior to 1982, the survey was conducted monthly. Data collection begins in January following the survey year and continues for about 14 weeks. A new sample is introduced about every 5 years, most recently for the 1999 survey.


A mail-out/mail-back survey of approximately 45,000 selected service businesses with paid employees; supplemented by administrative records data or imputed values to account for nonemployer and certain other businesses. To be eligible for the list sample, service businesses must be in the Business Register which contains all Employer Identification Numbers (EINs) for listed businesses and all locations of multi-establishment companies. EINs may represent one or more establishments and firms may have one or more EINs.

In the initial sampling, companies are stratified by major and minor kind of business, and by estimated receipts or revenue. All companies with total receipts above applicable size cutoffs are included in the survey and report for all their service industry locations. In a second stage, EINs of unselected companies are stratified by major kind of business and receipts or revenue. Within each stratum a simple random sample of EINs is selected.

The initial sample is updated quarterly to reflect "births" and "deaths"; adding new employer businesses identified in the Business and Professional Classification Survey and deleting firms and EINs that are no longer active. During interim periods, service nonemployer and other businesses are represented by administrative records data or imputed values.


Service Annual Survey reports are normally published no later than 12 months after the end of the survey year. Summary data are provided at the industry group and industry level for the survey year and past years. Industry specific data are provided for selected industries. In addition, there are data for selected kinds of business by federal income-tax status (taxable and tax-exempt).

The above data are available at:


The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses these data in its preparation of national income and product accounts, and its benchmark and annual input-output tables. The Bureau of Labor Statistics uses the data as input to its producer price indexes and in developing productivity measurements. The Health Care Financing Administration uses the data to estimate expenditures for the National Health Accounts. The Coalition of Service Industries uses data for general research and planning.

Trade and professional organizations use the estimates to analyze industry trends and benchmark their own statistical programs, develop forecasts, and evaluate regulatory requirements. The media use estimates for news reports and background information. Private businesses use the estimates to measure market share; analyze business potential; and plan investment decisions.


Provides the only source of annual receipts estimates for the service industries.


o Business Expenditures Survey

o Company Statistics

o Census of Service Industries

o Annual Capital Expenditure Survey


o  Services                                 o Next Program

o  U.S. Economy                             o Economy Overview

Last revised: June 5, 2001

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