Department of Labor Logo United States Department of Labor
Dot gov

The .gov means it's official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site.

Https

The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

News Release Information

18-345-CHI
Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (312) 353-1138

County Employment and Wages in Wisconsin — Third Quarter 2017

Wisconsin’s six large counties had employment increases from September 2016 to September 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are defined as those with 2016 annual average employment levels of 75,000 or more.) Brown County had the largest increase, up 1.2 percent, followed by Outagamie County, up 0.8 percent. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Charlene Peiffer noted that the employment gains in five of the state’s large counties were less than the national increase of 1.0 percent. (See table 1.)

Among the six large counties in Wisconsin, employment was highest in Milwaukee (487,000) in September 2017, followed by Dane (333,100) and Waukesha (242,700). Each of the three other counties—Brown, Outagamie, and Winnebago—had employment levels of less than 160,000. Collectively, Wisconsin's six large counties accounted for 49.6 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 346 largest counties made up 72.7 percent of total U.S. employment.

From the third quarter of 2016 to the third quarter of 2017, each of Wisconsin’s six large counties had over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. Dane County had the highest average weekly wage in the state at $1,017, followed by Waukesha County at $986 and Milwaukee County at $955. (See table 1.) Nationally, the average weekly wage fell 0.6 percent over the year to $1,021 in the third quarter of 2017.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 66 counties in Wisconsin with employment below 75,000. All of these smaller counties had average weekly wages below the national average. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

The six large counties in Wisconsin had wage declines from the third quarter of 2016 to the third quarter of 2017. (See table 1.) These losses ranged from 0.2 percent in Outagamie County to 2.0 percent in Brown County.

Average weekly wages for the nation decreased 0.6 percent over the year. Among the 346 largest counties, 265 had over-the-year wage decreases. Mercer, N.J., had the largest decrease with a loss of 8.8 percent. Wyandotte, Kan., had the second largest decrease in average weekly wages, down 6.0 percent, followed by Clark, Nev. (-5.3 percent); Somerset, N.J. (-5.0 percent); and Clay, Mo. (-4.8 percent).

Of the 346 largest U.S. counties, 71 registered over-the-year wage increases. Midland, Texas, had the largest wage gain, up 8.4 percent from the third quarter of 2016. Union, N.J., was second with a wage increase of 8.2 percent, followed by Elkhart, Ind. (6.5 percent); Forsyth, N.C. (5.3 percent); and Maui + Kalawao, Hawaii (4.6 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Average weekly wages in three of Wisconsin’s large counties placed in the top half of the national ranking in the third quarter of 2017. However, average weekly wages in these three counties were below the national average of $1,021. Dane County‘s $1,017 average weekly wage ranked 101st among the 346 largest U.S. counties. Waukesha ($986) and Milwaukee ($955) Counties placed 126th and 153rd, respectively. Outagamie County’s $871 weekly wage was the lowest among the state’s large counties, ranking 237th nationwide.

Nationally, 96 large counties had average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,021 in the third quarter of 2017. Santa Clara, Calif., recorded the highest average weekly wage at $2,320, followed by San Mateo, Calif. ($2,123); San Francisco, Calif. ($1,954); New York, N.Y. ($1,889); and Washington, D.C. ($1,759).

Among the largest U.S. counties, 250 had weekly wages below the national average in the third quarter of 2017. Cameron, Texas ($612) reported the lowest wage, followed by Horry County, S.C. ($633); Hidalgo, Texas ($649); and Webb, Texas ($672).

Average weekly wages in Wisconsin’s smaller counties

Of the 66 counties in Wisconsin with employment below 75,000, Sheboygan County had the highest average weekly wage at $870. Florence County had the lowest weekly wage at $503, followed by Bayfield at $549. (See table 2.)

When all 72 counties in Wisconsin were considered, 11 reported average weekly wages of $649 or lower, 34 had wages from $650 to $749, 17 had wages from $750 to $849, and 10 had wages of $850 or higher. (See chart 1.)

Additional statistics and other information

QCEW data for states have been included in this release in table 3. For additional information about quarterly employment and wages data, please read the Technical Note or visit 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 2017 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 first quarter 2017 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online are now available at www.bls.gov/cew/publications/employment-and-wages-annual-averages/2016/home.htm. The 2017 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2018.

The County Employment and Wages release for fourth quarter 2017 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, May 23, 2018.

QCEW Publication Acceleration and Conversion to Two Data Releases

The national QCEW publication process is accelerating for a more timely release. Beginning with the national fourth quarter 2017 release, QCEW data will be published in two parts. The current County Employment and Wages news release and associated data will be accelerated and published first. The full QCEW data release will occur two weeks later, accompanied by a data release notice.


Technical Note

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 9.9 million employer reports cover 144.5 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.

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. Covered employment and wages in the United States and the 6 largest counties in Wisconsin, third quarter 2017
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands) Percent change, September 2016-17 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, third quarter 2016-17 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

144,464.4 1.0 -- $1,021 -- -0.6 --

Wisconsin

2,866.9 0.5 -- 876 32 -1.0 29

Brown, Wis.

157.1 1.2 132 884 222 -2.0 256

Dane, Wis.

333.1 0.7 192 1,017 101 -1.4 195

Milwaukee, Wis.

487.0 0.1 270 955 153 -1.3 186

Outagamie, Wis.

108.1 0.8 182 871 237 -0.2 90

Waukesha, Wis.

242.7 0.2 259 986 126 -1.9 245

Winnebago, Wis.

93.5 0.1 270 921 187 -0.9 150

Footnotes:
(1) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(2) Percent changes were computed from quarterly employment and pay data adjusted for noneconomic county reclassifications.
(3) Ranking does not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.
(4) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.

Note: Data are preliminary. Covered employment and wages includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.

Table 2. Covered employment and wages in the United States and all counties in Wisconsin, third quarter 2017
Area Employment September 2017 Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

144,464,425 $1,021

Wisconsin

2,866,859 876

Adams

4,758 668

Ashland

8,220 739

Barron

22,333 722

Bayfield

4,377 549

Brown

157,097 884

Buffalo

3,891 676

Burnett

4,802 604

Calumet

13,072 721

Chippewa

24,503 754

Clark

11,115 710

Columbia

22,872 749

Crawford

7,510 653

Dane

333,108 1,017

Dodge

36,018 831

Door

15,104 623

Douglas

15,478 729

Dunn

17,503 764

Eau Claire

57,740 832

Florence

1,072 503

Fond du Lac

47,023 834

Forest

3,136 685

Grant

17,715 684

Green

15,953 712

Green Lake

6,418 698

Iowa

9,957 734

Iron

1,667 573

Jackson

8,939 764

Jefferson

32,874 729

Juneau

9,442 729

Kenosha

66,716 755

Kewaunee

7,179 735

La Crosse

69,400 821

Lafayette

4,321 705

Langlade

7,547 654

Lincoln

11,170 772

Manitowoc

33,595 791

Marathon

70,680 861

Marinette

18,456 764

Marquette

3,939 628

Menominee

2,055 570

Milwaukee

486,977 955

Monroe

20,851 768

Oconto

9,305 650

Oneida

16,774 747

Outagamie

108,082 871

Ozaukee

43,214 860

Pepin

2,349 728

Pierce

10,176 677

Polk

16,224 667

Portage

34,603 776

Price

5,501 724

Racine

74,853 864

Richland

5,759 687

Rock

66,362 824

Rusk

5,050 722

St. Croix

33,693 763

Sauk

36,783 730

Sawyer

7,104 641

Shawano

12,701 629

Sheboygan

61,546 870

Taylor

8,166 703

Trempealeau

14,302 745

Vernon

9,014 666

Vilas

8,191 586

Walworth

41,959 716

Washburn

5,923 657

Washington

55,538 816

Waukesha

242,662 986

Waupaca

19,737 696

Waushara

6,323 630

Winnebago

93,527 921

Wood

38,517 841

Footnotes
(1) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(2) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.

NOTE: Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs. Data are preliminary.

Table 3. Covered employment and wages by state, third quarter 2017
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands) Percent change, September 2016-17 Average weekly wage National ranking by level Percent change, third quarter 2016-17 National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

144,464.4 1.0 $1,021 -- -0.6 --

Alabama

1,941.1 0.8 859 37 -1.3 38

Alaska

335.4 -0.7 1,025 15 -2.8 50

Arizona

2,760.1 2.4 948 24 -0.2 10

Arkansas

1,213.0 0.6 788 49 -0.6 19

California

17,153.4 1.7 1,215 4 0.5 4

Colorado

2,625.9 1.9 1,067 9 0.5 4

Connecticut

1,676.3 0.1 1,179 6 -2.2 47

Delaware

443.0 0.4 1,026 14 0.4 6

District of Columbia

764.7 0.7 1,759 1 1.3 2

Florida

8,305.8 -0.2 896 29 -1.1 31

Georgia

4,343.5 1.3 961 21 -0.9 27

Hawaii

652.5 0.4 953 22 -0.3 13

Idaho

722.3 2.7 778 50 -0.5 16

Illinois

5,969.6 0.5 1,057 10 -0.3 13

Indiana

3,044.0 0.6 861 36 -0.6 19

Iowa

1,546.1 -0.2 855 38 -2.2 47

Kansas

1,376.4 -0.1 839 41 -2.1 46

Kentucky

1,890.4 0.5 837 42 -2.4 49

Louisiana

1,904.3 -0.1 869 33 -1.7 42

Maine

621.9 0.7 821 46 -0.5 16

Maryland

2,661.8 0.5 1,105 8 -1.7 42

Massachusetts

3,568.0 0.9 1,265 2 -0.9 27

Michigan

4,334.3 0.9 964 20 -1.1 31

Minnesota

2,883.0 1.1 1,030 13 -2.0 45

Mississippi

1,129.1 -0.1 729 51 -1.4 39

Missouri

2,805.8 0.9 878 31 -1.2 34

Montana

468.6 0.9 793 48 0.1 8

Nebraska

973.3 -0.2 850 39 -0.8 23

Nevada

1,337.7 2.9 914 26 -3.8 51

New Hampshire

659.1 0.6 1,022 16 -0.4 15

New Jersey

4,043.6 1.1 1,156 7 -1.5 41

New Mexico

816.0 0.3 823 45 -0.8 23

New York

9,329.8 1.2 1,219 3 -0.2 10

North Carolina

4,348.0 1.3 904 27 -0.7 21

North Dakota

419.2 -1.0 953 22 -1.2 34

Ohio

5,383.6 0.6 920 25 -0.8 23

Oklahoma

1,593.3 0.7 843 40 -1.2 34

Oregon

1,905.3 1.8 969 19 -0.1 9

Pennsylvania

5,836.5 1.0 1,002 17 -1.1 31

Rhode Island

484.5 0.8 973 18 -1.8 44

South Carolina

2,027.2 0.8 828 43 -0.5 16

South Dakota

426.2 0.4 803 47 -0.7 21

Tennessee

2,953.3 1.1 903 28 -1.2 34

Texas

12,008.9 1.4 1,032 12 -1.0 29

Utah

1,444.1 2.6 879 30 -0.2 10

Vermont

310.3 0.1 869 33 -1.4 39

Virginia

3,843.6 1.0 1,053 11 -0.8 23

Washington

3,343.4 2.0 1,208 5 1.7 1

West Virginia

694.0 0.2 826 44 1.1 3

Wisconsin

2,866.9 0.5 876 32 -1.0 29

Wyoming

276.2 0.3 868 35 0.3 7

Puerto Rico

862.8 -3.1 509 (3) -2.7 (3)

Virgin Islands

36.9 -1.1 763 (3) -1.9 (3)

Footnotes:
(1) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(2) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.
(3) Data not included in the national ranking.

Note: Data are preliminary. Covered employment and wages includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.

  Chart 1. Average weekly wages by county in Wisconsin, third quarter 2017

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2018