The economic census provides a detailed portrait of the United States' economy once every five years (those ending in 2 and 7), from the national to the local level.
The 2017 Economic Census covers most of the U.S. economy in its basic collection of establishment statistics. There also are several related programs, including statistics on minority- and women-owned businesses. Censuses of agriculture and governments are conducted at the same time.
The American Community Survey (ACS) is a nationwide survey designed to provide communities a fresh look at how they are changing. It is a critical element in the Census Bureau's reengineered decennial census program. The ACS collects and produces population and housing information every year instead of every ten years.
The ACS, which is sent to approximately 3 million households every year, replaced the Census long form beginning in 2010.