IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

A framework for cut-off sampling in business survey design

  • Marco Bee


  • Roberto Benedetti


  • Giuseppe Espa


In sampling theory the large concentration of the population with respect to most surveyed variables constitutes a problem which is difficult to tackle by means of classical tools. One possible solution is given by cut-off sampling, which explicitly prescribes to discard part of the population; in particular, if the population is composed by firms or establishments, the method results in the exclusion of the “smallest” firms. Whereas this sampling scheme is common among practitioners, its theoretical foundations tend to be considered weak, because the inclusion probability of some units is equal to zero. In this paper we propose a framework to justify cut-off sampling and to determine the census and cut-off thresholds. We use an estimation model which assumes as known the weight of the discarded units with respect to each variable; we compute the variance of the estimator and its bias, which is caused by violations of the aforementioned hypothesis. We develop an algorithm which minimizes the MSE as a function of multivariate auxiliary information at the population level. Considering the combinatorial optimization nature of the model, we resort to the theory of stochastic relaxation: in particular, we use the simulated annealing algorithm.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia in its series Department of Economics Working Papers with number 0709.

in new window

Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:trn:utwpde:0709
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Via Inama 5, 38100 Trento

Phone: +39-461-882201
Fax: +39-461-882222
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:trn:utwpde:0709. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Luciano Andreozzi)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.