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16-1142-PHI
Thursday, June 02, 2016

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Occupational Employment and Wages in Reading – May 2015

Workers in the Reading Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $21.04 in May 2015, 9 percent below the nationwide average of $23.23, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that, after testing for statistical significance, wages in the local area were significantly lower than their respective national averages in 10 of the 22 major occupational groups, including arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media; life, physical, and social science; and computer and mathematical.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, Reading employment shares were significantly higher in 6 of the 22 occupational groups, including production; transportation and material moving; and installation, maintenance, and repair. Conversely, 12 groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation; these groups included management; computer and mathematical; and business and financial operations. (See table A and box note at end of release.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and Reading metropolitan area, and measures of statistical significance, May 2015
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Reading United States Reading Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100% 100%   $23.23 $21.85 * -9

Management

5.0 3.4 * 55.30 55.69   1

Business and financial operations

5.1 3.7 * 35.48 31.67 * -11

Computer and mathematical

2.9 1.3 * 41.43 35.14 * -15

Architecture and engineering

1.8 2.0   39.89 35.77 * -10

Life, physical, and social science

0.8 0.5 * 34.24 28.83 * -16

Community and social service

1.4 1.8 * 22.19 20.81 * -6

Legal

0.8 0.5 * 49.74 42.26   -15

Education, training, and library

6.2 6.4 * 25.48 25.45   0

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.3 0.7 * 27.39 21.82 * -20

Healthcare practitioners and technical

5.8 5.9   37.40 32.76 * -12

Healthcare support

2.9 3.8 * 14.19 12.94 * -9

Protective service

2.4 1.4 * 21.45 21.72   1

Food preparation and serving related

9.1 8.5 * 10.98 10.56 * -4

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

3.2 3.3   13.02 13.34   2

Personal care and service

3.1 2.9   12.33 12.22   -1

Sales and related

10.5 9.4 * 18.90 17.85 * -6

Office and administrative support

15.8 15.2 * 17.47 17.08   -2

Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.1 * 12.67 13.63 * 8

Construction and extraction

4.0 3.3 * 22.88 23.23   2

Installation, maintenance, and repair

3.9 4.8 * 22.11 22.28   1

Production

6.6 12.3 * 17.41 18.69 * 7

Transportation and material moving

6.9 9.0 * 16.90 16.54   -2

Footnotes:

* The percent share of employment or mean hourly wage for this area is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.
(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in Reading is above the national mean wage, while a negative difference reflects a lower wage.
 

One occupational group—production—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Reading had 20,950 jobs in production, accounting for 12.3 percent of local area employment, nearly twice the 6.6-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $18.69, measurably above the national wage of $17.41.

With employment of 2,090, helpers--production workers was the largest occupation within the production group, followed by first-line supervisors of production and operating workers (1,540). Among the higher-paying jobs were first-line supervisors of production and operating workers and printing press operators, with mean hourly wages of $26.07 and $22.02, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were bakers ($12.07) and sewing machine operators ($12.79). (Detailed occupational data for production are presented in table 1; for a complete listing of detailed occupations available go to www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_39740.htm.)

Location quotients allow us to explore the occupational make-up of a metropolitan area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. (See table 1.) For example, a location quotient of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in the area as it does nationally. In the Reading area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in many of the occupations within the production group. For instance, metal and plastic multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders were employed at 3.7 times the national rate in Reading, and production worker helpers at 3.9 times the U.S. average. On the other hand, power plant operators had a location quotient of 1.0 in Reading, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

These statistics are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.

Notes on Occupational Employment Statistics Data

With the issuance of data for May 2015, the OES program has incorporated redefined metropolitan area definitions as designated by the Office of Management and Budget. OES data are available for 394 metropolitan areas, 38 metropolitan divisions, and 167 OES-defined nonmetropolitan areas. A listing of the areas and their definitions can be found at www.bls.gov/oes/current/msa_def.htm.

A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between two values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.


Technical Note

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey is a semiannual mail survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OES program produces employment and wage estimates for over 800 occupations for all industries combined in the nation; the 50 states and the District of Columbia; 432 metropolitan areas and divisions; 167 nonmetropolitan areas; and Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. National estimates are also available by industry for NAICS sectors, 3-, 4-, and selected 5- and 6-digit industries, and by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. OES data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm.

OES estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.2 million establishments. Forms are mailed to approximately 200,000 sampled establishments in May and November each year. May 2015 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2015, November 2014, May 2014, November 2013, May 2013, and November 2012. The overall national response rate for the six panels is 73.5 percent based on establishments and 69.6 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The unweighted employment of sampled establishments across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 57.9 percent of total national employment. (Response rates are slightly lower for these estimates due to the federal shutdown in October 2013.) The sample in the Reading, Pa. Metropolitan Statistical Area included 1,957 establishments with a response rate of 76 percent. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/news.release/ocwage.tn.htm.

The May 2015 OES estimates are based on the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system and the 2012 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). Information about the 2010 SOC is available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/soc and information about the 2012 NAICS is available at www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm.

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

The Reading, Pa. Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Berks County in Pennsylvania.

Additional information

OES data are available on our regional web page at http://www.bls.gov/regions/mid-atlantic. Answers to frequently asked questions about the OES data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm. Detailed technical information about the OES survey is available in our Survey Methods and Reliability Statement on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/oes/current/methods_statement.pdf.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request – Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Employment and wage data from the Occupational Employment Statistics survey, by occupation, Reading Metropolitan Statistical Area, May 2015
Occupation (1) Employment (2) Mean wage
Level Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Production occupations

20,950 1.9 $18.69 $38,880

First-Line supervisors of production and operating workers

1,540 2.1 26.07 54,220

Engine and other machine assemblers

(5) (5) 17.55 36,510

Structural metal fabricators and fitters

90 0.9 20.50 42,640

Team assemblers

1,040 0.8 15.11 31,430

Assemblers and fabricators, all other

(5) (5) 13.63 28,340

Bakers

500 2.3 12.07 25,110

Butchers and meat cutters

(5) (5) 14.31 29,760

Food batchmakers

320.0 1.9 14.26 29,660

Computer-controlled machine tool operators, metal and plastic

240 1.3 18.24 37,940

Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

230 2.6 20.24 42,100

Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

310 1.3 20.29 42,190

Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

250.0 2.8 (5) (5)

Lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

90 1.7 20.14 41,890

Milling and planing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

80 3.2 18.79 39,080

Machinists

1,180 2.4 18.16 37,770

Metal-refining furnace operators and tenders

(5) (5) 26.45 55,010

Pourers and casters, metal

90 7.5 16.29 33,880

Foundry mold and coremakers

70 4.6 16.29 33,880

Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

290 1.7 15.93 33,140

Multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

480 3.7 20.43 42,500

Tool and die makers

100 1.1 22.32 46,420

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers

1,040 2.2 20.73 43,110

Plating and coating machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

130 3.0 17.42 36,230

Metal workers and plastic workers, all other

100 3.7 19.47 40,500

Prepress technicians and workers

(5) (5) 14.41 29,970

Printing press operators

520 2.5 22.02 45,800

Print binding and finishing workers

(5) (5) 17.04 35,450

Laundry and dry-cleaning workers

210 0.8 11.13 23,140

Pressers, textile, garment, and related materials

30 0.5 10.33 21,480

Sewing machine operators

510 2.9 12.79 26,610

Sewers, hand

30 3.7 13.55 28,190

Tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers

(5) (5) 13.23 27,510

Textile bleaching and dyeing machine operators and tenders

90.0 6.1 14.59 30,340

Textile cutting machine setters, operators, and tenders

70 3.8 15.18 31,570

Textile knitting and weaving machine setters, operators, and tenders

180 6.4 18.45 38,380

Textile winding, twisting, and drawing out machine setters, operators, and tenders

90 2.5 15.32 31,870

Extruding and forming machine setters, operators, and tenders, synthetic and glass fibers

(5) (5) 18.07 37,590

Upholsterers

210 5.7 17.25 35,870

Cabinetmakers and bench carpenters

290 2.5 17.96 37,360

Sawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, wood

60 1.0 17.56 36,530

Woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders, except sawing

120.0 1.3 15.93 33,140

Power plant operators

50 1.0 36.50 75,910

Stationary engineers and boiler operators

80 2.0 24.95 51,890

Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators

230 1.6 24.12 50,170

Chemical equipment operators and tenders

350 4.2 18.25 37,970

Separating, filtering, clarifying, precipitating, and still machine setters, operators, and tenders

60 1.0 19.12 39,770

Crushing, grinding, and polishing machine setters, operators, and tenders

40 0.9 17.26 35,900

Grinding and polishing workers, hand

70 2.0 14.23 29,600

Mixing and blending machine setters, operators, and tenders

110 0.7 15.27 31,750

Cutting and slicing machine setters, operators, and tenders

140 1.8 17.58 36,570

Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

(5) (5) 16.02 33,320

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

590 1.0 18.99 39,500

Dental laboratory technicians

(5) (5) 18.10 37,650

Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

400 0.9 14.59 30,350

Coating, painting, and spraying machine setters, operators, and tenders

240 2.2 17.51 36,420

Painters, transportation equipment

80 1.3 20.23 42,070

Photographic process workers and processing machine operators

50.0 1.7 11.59 24,100

Paper goods machine setters, operators, and tenders

120 1.0 17.59 36,580

Helpers--production workers

2,090 3.9 16.24 33,780

Production workers, all other

120 0.4 14.15 29,440

Footnotes:
(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Reading Metropolitan Statistical Area, see www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_39740.htm.
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(3) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.
(4) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.
(5) Estimate not released.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, June 02, 2016