Monday, December 19, 2016
The average weekly wage in Washington, D.C., increased 1.1 percent from the second quarter of 2015 to the second quarter of 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Nationally, the average weekly wage rose 2.2 percent over the year, as 304 of the largest 344 counties had 12-month increases. (Large counties are defined as those with employment of 75,000 or more as measured by 2015 annual average employment.) Over-the-year weekly wage growth in Washington, D.C., placed 265th among the nation’s 344 large counties. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that the average weekly wage in Washington, D.C., ranked fifth-highest in the nation in the second quarter of 2016, at $1,623. Nationally, weekly wages averaged $989.
Washington, D.C., reported a 1.7-percent increase in employment from June 2015 to June 2016. Nationally, employment rose 1.5 percent during this 12-month period as 291 of the largest 344 U.S. counties gained jobs. Washington, D.C.’s percent growth in employment ranked 148th among the nation’s largest counties. Employment in Washington, D.C., totaled 756,000 in June 2016.
Large county wage changes
Among the 344 largest U.S. counties, McLean, Ill., had the largest over-the-year increase in average weekly wages (21.0 percent), followed by the counties of Elkhart, Ind. (8.5 percent) and King, Wash. (8.1 percent).
Only 36 large counties nationwide experienced over-the-year declines in average weekly wages, led by Ventura, Calif., with a loss of 8.4 percent. Forsyth, N.C., had the second-largest decline at 6.5 percent, followed by Lafayette, La. (-6.2 percent); Gregg, Texas (-3.7 percent); and Midland, Texas (-3.2 percent).
Large county average weekly wages
Across the United States, average weekly wages were higher than the national average in 102 of the largest 344 counties. Santa Clara, Calif., held the top position with an average weekly wage of $2,252. San Mateo, Calif., was second with an average weekly wage of $1,871, followed by New York, N.Y. ($1,866); San Francisco, Calif. ($1,806); Washington, D.C. ($1,623); and Suffolk, Mass. ($1,571).
Three of the 10 counties with the highest wages in the United States were located in the Washington metropolitan area (Arlington, Va.; Fairfax, Va.; and Washington, D.C.), and three were in the New York metropolitan area (Fairfield, Conn.; New York, N.Y.; and Somerset, N.J.). Three other top-paying counties were located in or around the San Francisco metropolitan area (San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara, Calif.). Rounding out the top 10 was Suffolk, Mass., located in the Boston metropolitan area. (See table 1.)
There were 241 large counties with an average weekly wage below the national average in the second quarter of 2016. The lowest average weekly wage was reported in Horry, S.C. ($598), followed by Cameron, Texas ($602); Hidalgo, Texas ($626); Webb, Texas ($659); Yakima, Wash. ($687); and Lake, Fla. ($681).
Additional statistics and other information
QCEW data for states have been included in this release in table 2. For additional information about quarterly employment and wages data, please read the Technical Note or visit the QCEW Web site at www.bls.gov/cew/.
Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online features comprehensive information by detailed industry on establishments, employment, and wages for the nation and all states. The 2015 edition of this publication contains selected data produced by Business Employment Dynamics (BED) on job gains and losses, as well as selected data from the second quarter 2015 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2015 are now available online at www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn15.htm. The 2016 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2017.
Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; Federal Relay Service: 1-800-877-8339.
Average weekly wage data by county are compiled under the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program, also known as the ES-202 program. The data are derived from summaries of employment and total pay of workers covered by state and federal unemployment insurance (UI) legislation and provided by State Workforce Agencies (SWAs). The 9.7 million employer reports cover 142.7 million full- and part-time workers. The average weekly wage values are calculated by dividing quarterly total wages by the average of the three monthly employment levels of those covered by UI programs. The result is then divided by 13, the number of weeks in a quarter. It is to be noted, therefore, that over-the-year wage changes for geographic areas may reflect shifts in the composition of employment by industry, occupation, and such other factors as hours of work. Thus, wages may vary among counties, metropolitan areas, or states for reasons other than changes in the average wage level. Data for all states, Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs), counties, and the nation are available on the BLS Web site at www.bls.gov/cew/; however, data in QCEW press releases have been revised and may not match the data contained on the Bureau’s Web site.
QCEW data are not designed as a time series. QCEW data are simply the sums of individual establishment records reflecting the number of establishments that exist in a county or industry at a point in time. Establishments can move in or out of a county or industry for a number of reasons—some reflecting economic events, others reflecting administrative changes.
The preliminary QCEW data presented in this release may differ from data released by the individual states as well as from the data presented on the BLS Web site. These potential differences result from the states’ continuing receipt, review and editing of UI data over time. On the other hand, differences between data in this release and the data found on the BLS Web site are the result of adjustments made to improve over-the-year comparisons. Specifically, these adjustments account for administrative (noneconomic) changes such as a correction to a previously reported location or industry classification. Adjusting for these administrative changes allows users to more accurately assess changes of an economic nature (such as a firm moving from one county to another or changing its primary economic activity) over a 12-month period. Currently, adjusted data are available only from BLS press releases.
|Area (1)||Employment||Average weekly wage (2)|
|June 2016 (thousands)||Percent change, June 2015-16 (3)||Average weekly wage||National Ranking by level||Percent change, second quarter 2015-16 (3)||National Ranking by percent change|
United States (4)
Santa Clara, Calif.
San Mateo, Calif.
New York, N.Y.
San Francisco, Calif.
NOTE: Covered employment and wages include workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs. Data are preliminary.
|State||Employment||Average weekly wage (1)|
|June 2016 (thousands)||Percent change, June 2015-16||Average weekly wage||National ranking by level||Percent change, second quarter 2015-16||National ranking by percent change|
United States (2)
District of Columbia
Note: Data are preliminary. Covered employment and wages includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.
Last Modified Date: Monday, December 19, 2016