Workers in finance, insurance, and real estate earned 7.5 percent more on average in 1997 than in 1996, the largest gain of any industry. This was the third consecutive year in which this industry was the leader in pay gains.
The only other major industry with above-average growth in pay was manufacturing, with an increase of 5.7 percent. The industries with the smallest pay gains were services (4.5 percent), retail trade (4.3 percent), and transportation, communications, and utilities (also 4.3 percent). Overall, average annual pay rose by 5.1 percent in the private sector from 1996 to 1997.
Among the industries shown in the chart, average annual pay was highest in 1997 in finance, insurance, and real estate: $44,860. Pay was lowest in retail trade ($15,877), an industry with a large proportion of part-time workers. Average pay in the entire private sector was $30,053 in 1997.
The BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program produced these data. Pay data presented here are for workers covered by State and Federal unemployment insurance programs. Find more information on pay in 1997 in "Average Annual Pay By State and Industry, 1997," news release USDL 99-171.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Pay increase largest in finance in 1997 at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/1999/jun/wk5/art04.htm (visited January 28, 2023).