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Cayman Islands Government Administration Building

Latest Indicators

Gross Domestic Product EST:
1.5%, Mar 2014 / Mar 2013
Consumer Price Index (CPI):
2.3%, Mar 2014 / Mar 2013
Work Permits:
2.9%, Mar 2014 / Mar 2013
Unemployment Rate:
6.3%, as at Dec 2013
Merchandise Imports ($):
5.0% Mar 2014 / Mar 2013
Overall Current Account Balance (EST):
1.3%, Dec 2013

FAQ's

Click the link below to learn more.

What is Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

GDP (Gross Domestic Product) -The GDP is defined as "the total monetary value of all goods and services produced in an economy over a given period of time" typically one year.


What is Labour Force Survey (LFS)

LFS (Labour Force Survey) – comprises of persons 15 years and over residing in the country who are employed or actively seeking work during the reference period. An estimate of the Cayman Islands labour force is produced whenever a Labour Force Survey is conducted which normally occurs twice a year (spring and fall).


What is Consumer Price Index (CPI)

CPI (Consumer Price Index) - measures the changing cost of a fixed basket of goods. Its change (on an annual or quarterly basis) is a measure of inflation.


What is Census

CENSUS - The Cayman Islands Population and Housing Census is held every 10 years. The purposes of the census are to have an official count of the total number of people and provide socio-economic information on the Cayman Islands. This information allows us to measure the development of our society and make decisions about the future need of our country.


What is Compendium

COMPENDIUM - The Compendium of Statistics is published annually and consists of information collected from different sectors of the economy and compiled into one publication.


What is Overseas Trade Report

OVERSEAS TRADE REPORT - Trade statistics are produced on information provided by the Cayman Islands Customs Department from importers, exporters and their agents. Trade data can help track economic growth, and is useful for reviewing and forecasting Government revenue from imports.


What is Economic Reports

ECONOMIC REPORTS - The Quarterly and Annual Economic Reports are produced by ESO to provide an overview and analysis of the Cayman Islands economy for the year or quarter in review.  It includes a review of developments within the major sectors of the economy, fiscal operations of government, public debt, and an economic outlook for the incoming year.


How is the CPI (Consumer Price Index) estimated?

The CPI for the Cayman Islands measures price changes at the retail level. The index is a Laspeyres type index and the scope of this information covers Grand Cayman only (therefore, excluding Cayman Brac and Little Cayman).

A total sample market basket size of approximately 661 items is used for the calculation of the CPI, with the data series dating back to 1974. The current CPI series is based in 1994 (1994=100).

CPI data is not seasonally adjusted. Moreover, with the exception of hotel rates, CPI prices are not seasonally influenced. The total expenditure weights for the CPI are chiefly determined by consumers' preference and taste, and are derived from the Household Income and Expenditure Survey for 1990-91.

Traditionally, the prices of substitute goods are factored in after four quarters of those regularly surveyed commodities being unavailable. Moreover, changes in certain products, generally, result in the re-basing of those items.

Varying units of measures are assigned to each product included in the CPI, and prices are gathered from over 100 outlets in the Cayman Islands. The collection of CPI data regularly includes: 1) personal visits to retailers; 2) telephone surveys; and 3) mail surveys. On the whole, personal visits to collect CPI data are mostly geared toward the three major local Supermarket retailers, and accounts for a large share of the total CPI data collection.


What items are represented in the CPI?

Overall, prices that are collected on approximately 661 sub-group items. These are further summarized into the following eight broad categories: Food, Clothing; Education and Medical; Transport and Communications; Alcohol and Tobacco; Housing; Durable Household Equipment; and Personal Goods and Services.


How frequent is the CPI estimated?

The CPI is compiled quarterly, specifically during March, June, September, and December. Traditionally, the collection of CPI figures begins during the second week of these months. For instance, the collection of CPI for the first quarter of the year, therefore, would begin during the second week of March.

The time lag between the completion, and the dissemination, of CPI data varies and is subject to resource availability and system performance. In some instances, this interval has extended to as much as three months, but the release of the CPI is typically within two months after data collection.


Do all ESO publications exist in paper and in electronic form? Are there any charges?

ESO publications are released on paper and as PDF files on the ESO website, www.eso.ky. The PDF versions can be downloaded free of charge from the website. Paper versions can be read in the ESO library free of charge or be bought from ESO.

The following paper publications are available for sale:

  • Cayman Islands Compendium of Statistics (US$60 or CI$50)
  • 1999 Cayman Islands Census (US$60 or CI$ 50)
  • Annual Economic Report (US$ 60 or CI$ 50)
  • Quarterly Economic Report (US$30 or CI$25)
  • Labour Force Report (US$30 or CI$25)
  • Consumer Price Index (US$30 or CI$25)
  • Overseas Trade Report (US$30 or CI$25)

Which ESO publications can I find on the ESO website?

All of ESO’s recent publications, since about 2000, can be found on the website. There are also some older ones. For older publications not found on the website please contact ESO at infostats@gov.ky.


What is the difference between population census counts, population estimates and projections?

The Population and Housing Census is a ten-yearly survey providing a wealth of data for: small geographic areas; variables such as occupation and country of birth; and households.

In between censuses, population estimates normally by age-sex are prepared to give an indication of change since the last population census.

For those interested in planning, projections of population are derived to give an indication of future change. Population projections are normally available by age groups, sex and status.

Census

The most commonly used population census measure is the usually resident population count. This is a count of all people who usually live in the country. This count excludes visitors from overseas and excludes residents who are overseas for a longer period. Residents temporarily away are included. The time limit for temporarily away is usually six months.

The 'census night population count' is a count of all people in the country on a given census night. This count includes visitors from overseas and excludes residents who are temporarily overseas on census night.

Provisional census counts are an early indication of the census population count. They are either based on the number of questionnaires collected and an estimate of the number of questionnaires uncollected, about one or two months after census night or on a manual count of the household members.

Estimates

Population estimates normally refers to the usually resident population. Population estimates are prepared bi-annually (mid-year and end year) to give an indication of population change since the last population census. The estimates are updated for births, deaths and net migration (external) since the last estimate. If reliable net migration figures are not available population estimates may be done using a household survey e.g. a Labour Force Survey. A third possibility is to do a head count between censuses.

Projections

Population projections use population estimates or a population census as a starting point and are an indication of future demographic change based on assumptions about future demographic behavior (births, deaths, migration).


Sampling Error

Results from sample surveys are always subject to some uncertainty because only a part of the total has been measured. This is called the sampling error. Sampling errors can be calculated and are normally given as so called Confidence Intervals. For example if the population point estimate from a household survey is 57,000, calculation of the sampling error may give a 95% confidence interval to 55,200 – 58,800.


Are we required to give our names to Census workers?

Names are asked for the sole purpose of guiding the enumerator and the key informant in responding to the series of questions for a household with more than one member, as we do not want responses for XX mixed up with responses for YY.

Legal names are NOT required in the questionnaire; nicknames may be used such as XX and YY. A household with one member need not provide a name. Names or nicknames are also needed in follow-up interviews to clarify certain responses specific to a person (as needed).

Names will NOT be entered in the Census database nor will they be used for any analysis or publication.


Should we also give our phone numbers?

These are used solely for follow-ups during the process of verification and data editing by ESO staff. Phone numbers will NOT be part of the Census database. This practice is not also new; it has been done in previous surveys.


Will our individual data such as health data be given out?

By Law, ESO cannot and will not be providing individual Census data to any agency including government bodies.

ESO also follows international best practices for national statistics offices where data collected from households and businesses are used for statistical purposes only and no individual data are to be released. These best practices also govern the ESO through the Statistics Law (1996 Revision) as Amended (2010).

The purpose of the health questions is to guide health services policy and planning at the community and society level. Again, individual information cannot be provided to any agency outside of the ESO or to any particular private sector group or industry.

Note that a greater number of health status questions were asked in the Survey of Living Conditions in 2007. No individual SLC data has been provided to, or requested by the insurance industry (or any industry for that matter).

ESO places utmost importance on its confidentiality obligations to its respondents with the penalties for breaches of this confidentiality strengthened in the Statistics Amendment Law 2010.

Among households, ESO's past surveys which include the Labour Force Survey, enjoys one of the highest response rates (80-85%) in the region. In the upcoming 2010 Population and Housing Census, ESO hopes that all households will similarly be as co-operative to the Census Enumerator and responsive to the Census questionnaire.


Why do Census Workers need to come to houses for interviews, why not do the interviews on-line or mail the questionnaire?

Household interviews are not new to Cayman. ESO has been conducting household interviews for the Labour Force Surveys annually (and in some years, twice a year). As noted above, the response rates are relatively high.

The ESO conducted a survey in October – November 2008 as to the preferred method for household surveys or censuses. Majority (65%) preferred face-to-face interviews.

Most importantly, the United Nations recommends the face-to-face interview as the best method for censuses and surveys to ensure high coverage and good quality.

An on-line census system is technically complicated and costly with most countries not adopting this method. For example in the Caribbean no country has used this method and the recent 2010 US Census also did not use this option.

An online system also requires money and time to develop and test. While the ESO initially considered this way back in 2008, it was not pursued for a variety of logistical and financial reasons, some of which are mentioned above. A key reason is that the census field work requires 3 simultaneous activities: canvassing and listing of dwelling units, and interview of households. Canvassing means going through an enumeration area to identify all buildings or structures that are used as dwelling units. Identified dwelling units should correspond to household interviews. The matching of canvassing/listing activities with an on-line interview (and subsequent verification) would make this process complicated and costly.

Conducting the Census by mail requires that all respondents themselves are trained on the Census concepts and definitions, or at least read the Census manual for themselves. This option requires more hours from the respondents than the average 20 minutes required in face-to-face interviews (for a household of 2-3 members). Plus, it is very typical that posting would eventually require follow-up face-to-face interviews for those with incomplete or poor-quality returns. This turned out to be the case in the 1999 Census.


How can we be assured that Census workers will keep our data confidentially?

All Census workers are required to take an Oath of Secrecy and are punishable under the Statistics Law for breach of confidentiality.
The Statistics Law stipulates penalties of $5000.00 and/or one year imprisonment for non-compliance or breach of confidentiality.


Do we need to answer all questions?

No person will be required to answer all questions. Several questions will be skipped for all respondents, depending on some key characteristics
(Whether respondents are household head or key informant; females with ages 15 to 49; employed or not; etc.)