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July 5 -- The Federal Reserve Board invites public comment by September 6, 2022 on the proposed extension of the Intermittent Survey of Business (FR 1374).

The FR 1374 survey data are used to gather information to enable the Federal Reserve System to carry out its policy and operational responsibilities. Under the guidance of the Board, Reserve Banks survey business contacts as economic developments warrant. Usually, these voluntary surveys are conducted by telephoning or emailing purchasing managers, economists, or other knowledgeable individuals at selected, relevant businesses. Reserve Banks may also use online survey tools to collect responses to the survey. The frequency and content of the questions, as well as the entities contacted, vary depending on developments in the economy. These surveys are conducted to provide Board members and Reserve Bank presidents real-time insights into economic conditions. The Board tailors these survey questions to match current concerns and interests, but they are not meant to supplant the more rigorous, existing economic reporting. The Board collects individual responses from the Reserve Banks and then distributes aggregate information to Board members and Reserve Bank presidents.

The FR 1374 surveys are generally conducted annually during October and November in connection with interviews done by Reserve Banks with managers, economists, or other knowledgeable individuals at selected, relevant businesses and as warranted by economic conditions, state and local governments. Additional surveys may be conducted on an ad hoc basis as warranted by economic conditions.
The topics discussed with the respondents are time sensitive, and the questions vary with the topic. There is no standard reporting form because typically some of the questions change with each survey. For each survey, the Board prepares questions in advance of specific topical interest and determines a relevant target group of firms to contact. The following questions are typically included on each survey:

1. Do you expect your firm to increase employment, remain unchanged, or decrease employment over the next twelve months?
a. Increase
b. Unchanged
c. Decrease

2. (If your firm is planning to increase employment, please answer question 2. Otherwise, skip to question 3) What are the three most important factors behind your plans to increase employment?
a. Expected growth of sales is high
b. Reduced employment too much during the recession
c. Current staff are overworked
d. Need skills not possessed by current staff
e. Labor costs have fallen
f. Decreased economic or financial uncertainty
g. Firm’s financial position has improved
h. Other factors (please specify)

3. (If your firm is actively seeking to hire workers, either to increase employment or to replace departing workers, then please answer question 3, otherwise skip.) Which of the following best describes your use of changes in starting wages and/or salaries to attract new hires?
a. We are raising starting wages and/or salaries for most job categories
b. We are raising starting wages and/or salaries for only selected job categories
c. We are not raising starting wages and/or salaries

In addition, questions related to other time-sensitive, ad hoc topics related to how businesses are experiencing salient aspects of current economic conditions (e.g., COVID-induced supply or labor difficulties) may be included. Examples of previous ad hoc topics include experiences with hiring qualified workers, restraints on hiring practices, and the use of changes to wages and salaries to retain existing employees.  

Individual survey responses to the FR 1374 are not published. Aggregate data regarding responses to the FR 1374 are tabulated by each Reserve Bank and sent to the Board, where they are compiled for review by Board members and Reserve Bank presidents. These data are generally not published, but each Reserve Bank may use its own district-level results for any official business purposes, including research that leads to publication, to the extent that respondents have not been granted confidential treatment of their submissions . . . .
Draft supporting statement: https://www.federalreserve.gov/reportforms/formsreview/FR%201374%20OMB%20SS.pdf
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-14217

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