Rounding of Business Register and Employment Survey estimates

In order to ensure confidentiality of business data, while maximising the detail of estimates available to users, the Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES) applies different rounding rules depending on the size and the nature of the estimates.

In addition, higher levels of rounding are applied to estimates in the open access datasets, than in the safeguarded access datasets, which require agreement to the conditions of an End User Licence to access.

Details of the level of rounding applied are given in the following table.

Size of estimate Public access Safeguarded (EUL) access
Relaxed rounding Strict rounding Relaxed rounding Strict rounding
1 to 49 5 10 5 5
50 to 249 25 50 10 25
250 to 499 50 100 25 50
500 to 999 100 200 50 100
1,000 to 2,499 250 500 125 250
2,500 to 4,999 500 1,000 250 500
5,000 + 1,000 2,000 500 1,000

Relaxed rounding will be applied to non-disclosive cells, which are defined as cells containing at least 3 enterprises and no dominant contributors. Dominance is based on cells with at least 3 enterprise groups, where the total of the cell less the 2 largest local units must be greater than or equal to 10% of the value of the largest local unit.

For further information regarding the rounding applied to BRES, details are in the ONS consultation on access to Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES) estimates and accompanying response.