October 31, 2003
The average weekly wages of all workers covered by State and federal unemployment insurance (UI) programs were $739 in the fourth quarter of 2002, an increase of 1.7 percent from the same quarter in 2001.
Among private sector industries, mining had the largest growth in weekly wages from the fourth quarter of 2001 to the fourth quarter of 2002, with a 5.3 percent gain. This was followed by utilities (4.1 percent), arts, entertainment, and recreation (3.6 percent), real estate and rental leasing (3.5 percent), and educational services (3.4 percent).
Management of companies and enterprises was the highest-paid sector in the fourth quarter of 2002, with average weekly wages of $1,304. Still, management of companies and enterprises was the only industry sector to record an over-the-year decline in average weekly wages in the fourth quarter of 2002, falling by 0.9 percent. The decline in this sector had a minimal effect on the U.S. average weekly wage since the sector accounted for only 2.3 percent of total covered wages in the fourth quarter.