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News Release Information

20-1301-PHI
Wednesday, June 24, 2020

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Occupational Employment and Wages in Erie – May 2019

Workers in the Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $20.52 in May 2019, 20 percent below the nationwide average of $25.72, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that after testing for statistical significance, 18 of the 22 major occupational groups had average wages in the local area that were significantly lower than their respective national averages, including arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media; architecture and engineering; and computer and mathematical.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, Erie area employment was more highly concentrated in 5 of the 22 occupational groups, including production and healthcare support. Twelve groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including business and financial operations, management, and computer and mathematical. (See table A and box note at end of release.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area, and measures of statistical significance, May 2019
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Erie United States Erie Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100 100 $25.72 $20.52 * -20

  Management

5.5 3.8 * 58.88 49.13 * -17

  Business and financial operations

5.6 3.4 * 37.56 30.35 * -19

  Computer and mathematical

3.1 1.4 * 45.08 34.30 * -24

  Architecture and engineering

1.8 1.4 * 42.69 31.41 * -26

  Life, physical, and social science

0.9 0.3 * 37.28 30.72 * -18

  Community and social service

1.5 2.0 * 24.27 19.90 * -18

  Legal

0.8 0.3 * 52.71 46.86 -11

  Education, training, and library

6.1 6.0 27.75 25.10 * -10

  Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.4 0.9 * 29.79 21.62 * -27

  Healthcare practitioners and technical

5.9 7.5 * 40.21 35.53 -12

  Healthcare support

4.4 7.2 * 14.91 13.84 * -7

  Protective service

2.4 1.8 * 23.98 25.34 6

  Food preparation and serving related

9.2 10.2 * 12.82 11.36 * -11

  Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

3.0 3.2 15.03 12.48 * -17

  Personal care and service

2.2 2.9 15.03 12.21 * -19

  Sales and related

9.8 9.6 20.70 15.99 * -23

  Office and administrative support

13.3 12.8 19.73 17.43 * -12

  Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.0 * 15.07 19.13 * 27

  Construction and extraction

4.2 3.2 * 25.28 23.01 * -9

  Installation, maintenance, and repair

3.9 3.5 * 24.10 20.82 * -14

  Production

6.2 11.4 * 19.30 17.30 * -10

  Transportation and material moving

8.5 7.1 * 18.23 15.86 * -13

Footnotes:
(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in the Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area is above the national mean wage, while a negative difference reflects a lower wage.

* The mean hourly wage or percent share of employment is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.

One occupational group—production—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Erie had 14,040 jobs in production occupations, accounting for 11.4 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 6.2-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $17.30, significantly lower than the national wage of $19.30.

Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators (1,800) and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers (1,010) were some of the larger occupations within the production group. Among the higher-paying jobs in this group were first-line supervisors of production and operating workers ($26.40) and tool and die makers ($23.39). At the lower end of the wage scale were helpers—production workers ($12.31) and laundry and dry-cleaning workers ($10.99). (Detailed data for transportation and material moving occupations are presented in table 1; for a complete listing of detailed occupations available go to www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_21500.htm.)

Location quotients allow us to explore the occupational make-up of a metropolitan area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. (See table 1.) For example, a location quotient of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in the area as it does nationally. In the Erie area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in several of the occupations within the production group. For instance, machinists were employed at 1.9 times the national rate in Erie, and computer numerically controlled tool operators at 6.7 times the national rate. On the other hand, helpers—production workers had a location quotient of 1.0 in Erie, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

These statistics are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation.

Changes to the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Data

With the May 2019 estimates, the OES program has begun implementing the 2018 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system. Each set of OES estimates is calculated from six panels of survey data collected over three years. Because the May 2019 estimates are based on a combination of survey data collected using the 2010 SOC and survey data collected using the 2018 SOC, these estimates use a hybrid of the two classification systems that contains some combinations of occupations that are not found in either the 2010 or 2018 SOC. These combinations may include occupations from more than one 2018 SOC minor group or broad occupation. Therefore, OES will not publish data for some 2018 SOC minor groups and broad occupations in the May 2019 estimates. The May 2021 estimates, to be published in Spring 2022, will be the first OES estimates based entirely on survey data collected using the 2018 SOC.

In addition, the OES program has replaced some 2018 SOC detailed occupations with SOC broad occupations or OES-specific aggregations. These include home health aides and personal care aides, for which OES will publish only the 2018 SOC broad occupation 31-1120 Home Health and Personal Care Aides.

For more information on the occupational classification system used in the May 2019 OES estimates, please see www.bls.gov/oes/soc_2018.htm and www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm#qf10.

The May 2019 OES estimates use the metropolitan area definitions delineated in Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Bulletin 17-01, which add a new Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) for Twin Falls, Idaho. For more information on the area definitions used in the May 2019 estimates, please see www.bls.gov/oes/current/msa_def.htm.


Technical Note

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OES data available from BLS include cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation; over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), nonmetropolitan areas, and territories; national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-digit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels, and national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. OES data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm.

The OES survey is a cooperative effort between BLS and the State Workforce Agencies (SWAs). BLS funds the survey and provides the procedures and technical support, while the State Workforce Agencies collect most of the data. OES estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.1 million establishments. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 180,000 to 200,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by mail, Internet or other electronic means, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2019 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2019, November 2018, May 2018, November 2017, May 2017, and November 2016. The unweighted sampled employment of 83 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 57 percent of total national employment. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 71 percent based on establishments and 68 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The sample in the Erie Metropolitan Statistical Area included 1,530 establishments with a response rate of 69 percent. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_tec.htm.

A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between two values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

The May 2019 OES estimates are the first set of OES estimates to be based in part on survey data collected using the 2018 SOC. These estimates use a hybrid of the 2010 and 2018 SOC systems. More information on the hybrid classification system is available at www.bls.gov/oes/soc_2018.htm.

The May 2019 OES estimates are based on the 2017 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). More information about the 2017 NAICS is available at www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm.

 

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

The Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Erie County in Pennsylvania.

Additional information

Answers to frequently asked questions about the OES data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm. Detailed technical information about the OES survey is available at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_doc.htm.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Employment and wage data from the Occupational Employment Statistics survey, by occupation, Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area, May 2019
Occupation (1) Employment (2) Mean wage
Level Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Production occupations

14,040 1.8 $17.30 $35,980

  First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

1,010 1.9 26.40 54,910

  Electrical, electronic, and electromechanical assemblers, except coil winders, tapers, and finishers

340 1.4 14.22 29,580

  Structural metal fabricators and fitters

70 1.2 17.44 36,270

  Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators

1,800 1.6 14.97 31,150

  Bakers

240 1.5 14.18 29,490

  Butchers and meat cutters

110 0.9 16.85 35,050

  Food batchmakers

360 2.7 15.34 31,910

  Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

(5) (5) 16.62 34,580

  Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

350 2.1 14.31 29,750

  Drilling and boring machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

30 3.6 16.50 34,320

  Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

370 5.8 16.26 33,820

  Lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

50 2.1 17.26 35,900

  Machinists

610 1.9 19.67 40,920

  Pourers and casters, metal

60 9.1 17.17 35,710

  Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

1,070 7.4 13.63 28,340

  Multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

620 5.0 14.35 29,840

  Tool and die makers

250 4.2 23.39 48,660

  Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers

(5) (5) 18.54 38,570

  Welding, soldering, and brazing machine setters, operators, and tenders

40 1.5 14.79 30,760

  Plating machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

180 5.1 15.39 32,020

  Printing press operators

110 0.8 12.94 26,910

  Laundry and dry-cleaning workers

240 1.4 10.99 22,860

  Cabinetmakers and bench carpenters

40 0.5 19.04 39,600

  Sawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, wood

30 0.7 15.25 31,710

  Woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders, except sawing

30 0.5 15.73 32,720

  Power plant operators

40 1.3 (5) (5)

  Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators

90 0.9 22.93 47,700

  Chemical equipment operators and tenders

120 1.6 22.50 46,810

  Separating, filtering, clarifying, precipitating, and still machine setters, operators, and tenders

40 1.0 15.63 32,500

  Grinding and polishing workers, hand

50 2.2 12.30 25,580

  Mixing and blending machine setters, operators, and tenders

160 1.6 20.95 43,580

  Cutting and slicing machine setters, operators, and tenders

60 1.2 14.13 29,380

  Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

90 1.6 19.00 39,510

  Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

750 1.6 16.21 33,730

  Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

420 1.3 15.74 32,730

  Coating, painting, and spraying machine setters, operators, and tenders

440 3.6 22.73 47,270

  Computer numerically controlled tool operators

850 6.7 17.39 36,170

  Computer numerically controlled tool programmers

50 2.1 25.17 52,360

  Adhesive bonding machine operators and tenders

40 3.3 13.25 27,570

  Cleaning, washing, and metal pickling equipment operators and tenders

40 2.6 16.72 34,790

  Molders, shapers, and casters, except metal and plastic

50 1.2 13.35 27,760

  Helpers--production workers

250 1.0 12.31 25,600

  Production workers, all other

60 0.3 13.86 28,820

Footnotes:
(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Erie, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area, see www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_21500.htm.
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(3) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.
(4) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full-time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.
(5) Estimates not released.

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, June 24, 2020