Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area (PMSA)

A geographic entity defined by the federal Office of Management and Budget for use by federal statistical agencies. If an area meets the requirements to qualify as a metropolitan statistical area and has a population of one million or more, two or more PMSAs may be defined within it if statistical criteria are met and local opinion is in favor. A PMSA consists of one or more counties (county subdivisions in New England) that have substantial commuting interchange. When two or more PMSAs have been recognized, the larger area of which they are components then is designated a consolidated metropolitan statistical area. This term was retired in 2003 and is replaced by Metropolitan Division.


Related terms: Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area (CMSA), Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)