WTFINL is a 14-digit numeric variable with four implied decimals. That is, 12345678901234 should be interpreted as 1234567890.1234. The IPUMS command files automatically make the necessary adjustment, so no further adjustment is needed.
WTFINL is a person-level weight that should be used in analyses of basic monthly data.
WTFINL is based on the inverse probability of selection into the sample and adjustments for the following factors: failure to obtain an interview; sampling within large sample units; adjustments to the known distribution of the entire population according to age, sex, and race; and allotting a weight of zero to populations not sampled in other monthly surveys (i.e., persons in the Hispanic oversample and members of the armed forces in ASEC samples).
WTFINL is comparable over time.
For non-ASEC samples in 1976-1981, WTFINL undercounts the total population by about one third due to the fact that children under 14 are not included in these samples. The degree of the undercount is less in samples from the month of October in 1976 and 1977 as these samples include children ages 3-13, but no children under three.
WTFINL also undercounts the total population in the January and February Basic Monthly samples from 1985. For unknown reasons, children (under 14) in both of these samples weighted as 0.
- 1976-1988: All persons.
- 1989-2017: Civilians.
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