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Want regular job now

Codes and Frequencies

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WANTJOB reports whether respondents not in the labor force (neither working, nor temporarily absent from a job, nor actively looking for work) wanted a job, either full- or part-time.


Apart from universe changes, this variable is largely comparable over time. The 1976-1993 question asked whether the person wanted "a regular job," but beginning in 1994 the question simply referred to "a job."

If individuals answered "Yes" or "Maybe/it depends" to the WANTJOB question, interviewers collected information on why these persons were not looking for work (see BLVENOWK, CANTFIND, FAMDUTY, ILHEALTH, KIDDUTY, LACKSCHL, SCHLDUTY, WRONGAGE, OTHEREAS, HANDICAP, OTHEREAS, and UNKREASN).


  • 1976-1989: Civilians age 14+ not in the labor force during the preceding week and in rotation groups 4 and 8.
  • 1990-2023: Civilians age 15+ not in the labor force during the preceding week.


Years Jan Feb ASEC Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1976 – 2023 - - X - - - - - - - - -