JEL Classification Codes

Articles in economics journals are usually classified according to the JEL classification codes, a system originated by the Journal of Economic Literature. The JEL is published quarterly by the American Economic Association (AEA) and contains survey articles and information on recently published books and dissertations. The AEA maintains EconLit, a searchable data base of citations for articles, books, reviews, dissertations, and working papers classified by JEL codes for the years from 1969. A recent addition to EconLit is indexing of economics-journal articles from 1886 to 1968 parallel to the print series Index of Economic Articles.

There are 19 primary JEL categories:

  • JEL: A - General Economics and Teaching
  • JEL: B - History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches
  • JEL: C - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods
  • JEL: D - Microeconomics
  • JEL: E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
  • JEL: F - International Economics
  • JEL: G - Financial Economics
  • JEL: H - Public Economics
  • JEL: I - Health, Education, and Welfare
  • JEL: J - Labor and Demographic Economics
  • JEL: K - Law and Economics
  • JEL: L - Industrial Organization
  • JEL: M - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting
  • JEL: N - Economic History
  • JEL: O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth
  • JEL: P - Economic Systems
  • JEL: Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
  • JEL: R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics
  • JEL: Y - Miscellaneous Categories
  • JEL: Z - Other Special Topics.

Each JEL primary category has secondary and tertiary subcategories, for example, under JEL: D - Microeconomics:

JEL: D1 - Household Behavior and Family Economics
JEL: D11 - Consumer Economics: Theory.

JEL code (sub)categories, including periodic updates, are referenced at Journal of Economic Literature (JEL) Classification System. Links to definitions of (sub)categories are at JEL Classification Codes Guide with corresponding examples of article titles linked to publication information, such as abstracts.

Articles in economics journals also list JEL codes (for example JEL: B12), facilitating their use across search engines. Comprehensive uses of JEL (sub)classifications include:

The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, 2008, v. 8, Appendix IV, pp. 854-69, and online via links
National Bureau of Economic Research Working Papers abstracts by year via links
Research Papers in Economics via links.

Read more about JEL Classification CodesGeneral Economics and Teaching JEL: A Subcategories, History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches JEL: B Subcategories, Mathematical and Quantitative Methods JEL: C Subcategories, Microeconomics JEL: D Subcategories, Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics JEL: E Subcategories, International Economics JEL: F Subcategories, Financial Economics JEL: G Subcategories, Public Economics JEL: H Subcategories, Health, Education, and Welfare JEL: I Subcategories, Labor and Demographic Economics JEL: J Subcategories, Law and Economics JEL: K Subcategories, Industrial Organization JEL: L Subcategories, Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting JEL: M Subcategories, Economic History JEL: N Subcategories, Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth JEL: O Subcategories, Economic Systems JEL: P Subcategories, Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics JEL: Q Subcatego, Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics JEL: R Subcategories, Miscellaneous Categories (economics) JEL: Y Subcategories, Other Special Topics (economics) JEL: Z Subcategories

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