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Economic News Release
CPS CPS Program Links

Usual Weekly Earnings Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (ET) Tuesday, October 19, 2021 			        USDL-21-1871

Technical information:	(202) 691-6378  *  *
Media contact:	        (202) 691-5902  *

                               THIRD QUARTER 2021

Median weekly earnings of the nation's 115.3 million full-time wage and salary workers
were $1,001 in the third quarter of 2021 (not seasonally adjusted), the U.S. Bureau of
Labor Statistics reported today. This was 0.7 percent higher than a year earlier,
compared with a gain of 5.3 percent in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers
(CPI-U) over the same period.

Data on usual weekly earnings are collected as part of the Current Population Survey, a
nationwide sample survey of households in which respondents are asked, among other 
things, how much each wage and salary worker usually earns. (See the Technical Note in
this news release.) Data shown in this news release are not seasonally adjusted unless
otherwise specified.

Highlights from the third-quarter data:

 --Median weekly earnings of full-time workers were $1,001 in the third quarter of 2021.
   Women had median weekly earnings of $916, or 83.3 percent of the $1,100 median for men.
   (See table 2.)

 --The women's-to-men's earnings ratio varied by race and ethnicity. White women earned
   81.9 percent as much as their male counterparts, compared with 96.3 percent for Black 
   women, 84.1 percent for Asian women, and 87.5 percent for Hispanic women. (See table 2.)

 --Among the major race and ethnicity groups, median weekly earnings of Blacks ($799) 
   and Hispanics ($779) working full-time jobs were lower than those of Whites ($1,024)
   and Asians ($1,309). By sex, median weekly earnings for Black men were $813, or 71.7
   percent of the median for White men ($1,134). Median earnings for Hispanic men were
   $826, or 72.8 percent of the median for White men. The difference was less among women,
   as Black women's median earnings were $783, or 84.3 percent of those for White women
   ($929), and earnings for Hispanic women were $723, or 77.8 percent of those for White
   women. Earnings of Asian men ($1,414) and women ($1,189) were higher than those of 
   their White counterparts. (See table 2.) 

 --By age, usual weekly earnings were highest for men ages 35 to 64: median weekly earnings
   were $1,255 for men ages 35 to 44, $1,307 for men ages 45 to 54, and $1,253 for men
   ages 55 to 64. Among women, usual weekly earnings were also highest for workers ages
   35 to 64: median weekly earnings were $1,002 for women ages 35 to 44, $1,033 for women
   ages 45 to 54, and $972 for women ages 55 to 64. Men and women ages 16 to 24 had the
   lowest median weekly earnings, $656 and $603, respectively. Men's and women's earnings
   were closer among younger workers than older workers; for example, women ages 16 to 
   24 earned 91.9 percent as much as men in the same age group, while the women's-to-men's
   earnings ratio was 78.4 percent for those age 55 and over. (See table 3.) 

 --Among the major occupational groups, persons employed full time in management, 
   professional, and related occupations had the highest median weekly earnings--$1,616 
   for men and $1,255 for women. Men and women employed in service occupations earned
   the least, $716 and $590, respectively. (See table 4.)

 --By educational attainment, full-time workers age 25 and over without a high school
   diploma had median weekly earnings of $633, compared with $817 for high school graduates
   (no college) and $1,474 for those holding at least a bachelor's degree. Among college
   graduates with advanced degrees (master's, professional, and doctoral degrees), the
   highest earning 10 percent of male workers made $4,239 or more per week, compared 
   with $2,959 or more for their female counterparts. (See table 5.)

 --Seasonally adjusted median weekly earnings were $1,003 in the third quarter of 2021,
   little changed from the previous quarter. (See table 1.)

 |											   |
 |           Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on Usual Weekly Earnings Data          |
 |											   |
 | Usual weekly earnings data for the third quarter of 2021 continue to reflect the impact |
 | on the labor market of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Changes in weekly earnings  |
 | in recent quarters must be interpreted with caution. More information on labor market   |
 | developments in recent months is available at  |
 | pandemic-and-response-on-the-employment-situation-news-release.htm.			   |

 |											   |
 |               Revision of Seasonally Adjusted Usual Weekly Earnings Data                |
 |											   |
 | The Usual Weekly Earnings news release for the fourth quarter of 2021, scheduled for	   |
 | release in January 2022, will incorporate annual revisions to seasonally adjusted data  |
 | for the number of full-time wage and salary workers and median weekly earnings in	   |
 | current dollars. (See table 1.) Estimates for constant (1982-84) dollar median weekly   |
 | earnings also will be affected by revisions to the current dollar series. Seasonally	   |
 | adjusted estimates back to the first quarter of 2017 will be subject to revision.	   |

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Last Modified Date: October 19, 2021