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Out of 339 largest counties, wages up in 323 and employment up in 281, March 2013 to March 2014

October 20, 2014

From March 2013 to March 2014, average weekly wages increased in 323 out of 339 U.S. counties with 75,000 or more employees. Employment increased in 281 of those counties. The 339 counties accounted for 78.3 percent of total U.S. wages and 72.0 percent of total employment.

Chester, Pennsylvania, experienced the largest over-the-year percentage increase in average weekly wages (13.9 percent) in the first quarter of 2014, compared with national growth of $1,027, or 3.8 percent. An average weekly wage gain of $520, or 49.1 percent, in the trade, transportation and utilities industry contributed the most to the county's increase in average weekly wages. New York, New York, had the second largest percentage increase in average weekly wages (12.0 percent), followed by Forsyth, North Carolina (9.6 percent), and San Mateo, California (9.6 percent).

Percentage change in average weekly wage, selected counties with 75,000 or more employees, first quarter 2013–2014
County Percent change (1)

Chester, PA

13.9%

New York, NY

12.0

San Mateo, CA

9.6

Forsyth, NC

9.6

San Francisco, CA

9.3

Suffolk, MA

8.8

Midland, TX

8.5

Palm Beach, FL

7.8

Washington, PA

7.3

Elkhart, IN

7.2

Anne Arundel, MD

-0.4

Suffolk, NY

-0.4

Chesapeake City, VA

-0.7

Lake, IN

-0.7

Peoria, IL

-0.9

Williamson, TN

-0.9

McLean, IL

-1.0

Ocean, NJ

-1.3

Dutchess, NY

-1.6

Cumberland, NC

-2.0

Benton, AR

-3.2
Footnotes:

(1) Percent changes were computed from quarterly employment and pay data adjusted for noneconomic county reclassifications.

From March 2013 to March 2014, Benton, Arkansas, had the largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages (3.2 percent) among the largest counties. A decrease of $253, or 8.9 percent, in the average weekly wage within the professional and business services industry had the largest impact on the county's average weekly wage decrease. The second largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages was experienced by Cumberland, North Carolina (2.0 percent), followed by Dutchess, New York (1.6 percent), and Ocean, New Jersey (1.3 percent).

Weld, Colorado, experienced the largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment (7.5 percent), compared with national growth of 1.7 percent. Within Weld, the largest employment increase occurred in the natural resources and mining industry, which gained 2,145 jobs, or 24.1 percent, over the year. York, South Carolina, had the second largest percentage increase in employment (6.4 percent), followed by Lee, Florida (6.3 percent), and Sarasota, Florida (5.8 percent).

Percentage change in employment, selected counties with 75,000 or more employees, first quarter 2013–2014
County Percent change (1)

Weld, CO

7.5%

York, SC

6.4

Lee, FL

6.3

Sarasota, FL

5.8

Wyandotte, KS

5.5

Midland, TX

5.4

Montgomery, TX

5.2

Collier, FL

4.9

Sonoma, CA

4.8

Fort Bend, TX

4.8

Fairfax, VA

-1.5

Alexandria City, VA

-1.6

Caddo Parish, LA

-1.6

Gregg, TX

-1.6

McLean, IL

-1.7

Arlington, VA

-1.8

Lake, IN

-1.9

Atlantic, NJ

-2.1

St Clair, IL

-2.3

Peoria, IL

-2.6
Footnotes:

(1) Percent changes were computed from quarterly employment and pay data adjusted for noneconomic county reclassifications.

Employment declined in 50 of the largest counties from March 2013 to March 2014. Peoria, Illinois, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment (2.6 percent). Within Peoria, the professional and business services industry had the largest decrease in employment, with a loss of 1,240 jobs, or 7.4 percent. St. Clair, Illinois, had the second largest percentage decrease in employment (2.3 percent), followed by Atlantic, New Jersey (2.1 percent), Lake, Indiana (1.9 percent), and Arlington, Virginia (1.8 percent).

These data are from the BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program. To learn more, see "County Employment and Wages: First Quarter 2014" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL-14-1713. These data are derived from summaries of employment of workers covered by state and federal unemployment insurance. 

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Out of 339 largest counties, wages up in 323 and employment up in 281, March 2013 to March 2014 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2014/ted_20141020.htm (visited August 09, 2020).

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