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News Release Information

18-345-CHI
Tuesday, April 17, 2018

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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/cewbultn16.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
AreaEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands)Percent change, September 2016-17 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)Average weekly wageNational ranking by level (3)Percent change, third quarter 2016-17 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

144,464.41.0--$1,021---0.6--

Wisconsin

2,866.90.5--87632-1.029

Brown, Wis.

157.11.2132884222-2.0256

Dane, Wis.

333.10.71921,017101-1.4195

Milwaukee, Wis.

487.00.1270955153-1.3186

Outagamie, Wis.

108.10.8182871237-0.290

Waukesha, Wis.

242.70.2259986126-1.9245

Winnebago, Wis.

93.50.1270921187-0.9150

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
AreaEmployment September 2017Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

144,464,425$1,021

Wisconsin

2,866,859876

Adams

4,758668

Ashland

8,220739

Barron

22,333722

Bayfield

4,377549

Brown

157,097884

Buffalo

3,891676

Burnett

4,802604

Calumet

13,072721

Chippewa

24,503754

Clark

11,115710

Columbia

22,872749

Crawford

7,510653

Dane

333,1081,017

Dodge

36,018831

Door

15,104623

Douglas

15,478729

Dunn

17,503764

Eau Claire

57,740832

Florence

1,072503

Fond du Lac

47,023834

Forest

3,136685

Grant

17,715684

Green

15,953712

Green Lake

6,418698

Iowa

9,957734

Iron

1,667573

Jackson

8,939764

Jefferson

32,874729

Juneau

9,442729

Kenosha

66,716755

Kewaunee

7,179735

La Crosse

69,400821

Lafayette

4,321705

Langlade

7,547654

Lincoln

11,170772

Manitowoc

33,595791

Marathon

70,680861

Marinette

18,456764

Marquette

3,939628

Menominee

2,055570

Milwaukee

486,977955

Monroe

20,851768

Oconto

9,305650

Oneida

16,774747

Outagamie

108,082871

Ozaukee

43,214860

Pepin

2,349728

Pierce

10,176677

Polk

16,224667

Portage

34,603776

Price

5,501724

Racine

74,853864

Richland

5,759687

Rock

66,362824

Rusk

5,050722

St. Croix

33,693763

Sauk

36,783730

Sawyer

7,104641

Shawano

12,701629

Sheboygan

61,546870

Taylor

8,166703

Trempealeau

14,302745

Vernon

9,014666

Vilas

8,191586

Walworth

41,959716

Washburn

5,923657

Washington

55,538816

Waukesha

242,662986

Waupaca

19,737696

Waushara

6,323630

Winnebago

93,527921

Wood

38,517841

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
StateEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands)Percent change, September 2016-17Average weekly wageNational ranking by levelPercent change, third quarter 2016-17National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

144,464.41.0$1,021---0.6--

Alabama

1,941.10.885937-1.338

Alaska

335.4-0.71,02515-2.850

Arizona

2,760.12.494824-0.210

Arkansas

1,213.00.678849-0.619

California

17,153.41.71,21540.54

Colorado

2,625.91.91,06790.54

Connecticut

1,676.30.11,1796-2.247

Delaware

443.00.41,026140.46

District of Columbia

764.70.71,75911.32

Florida

8,305.8-0.289629-1.131

Georgia

4,343.51.396121-0.927

Hawaii

652.50.495322-0.313

Idaho

722.32.777850-0.516

Illinois

5,969.60.51,05710-0.313

Indiana

3,044.00.686136-0.619

Iowa

1,546.1-0.285538-2.247

Kansas

1,376.4-0.183941-2.146

Kentucky

1,890.40.583742-2.449

Louisiana

1,904.3-0.186933-1.742

Maine

621.90.782146-0.516

Maryland

2,661.80.51,1058-1.742

Massachusetts

3,568.00.91,2652-0.927

Michigan

4,334.30.996420-1.131

Minnesota

2,883.01.11,03013-2.045

Mississippi

1,129.1-0.172951-1.439

Missouri

2,805.80.987831-1.234

Montana

468.60.9793480.18

Nebraska

973.3-0.285039-0.823

Nevada

1,337.72.991426-3.851

New Hampshire

659.10.61,02216-0.415

New Jersey

4,043.61.11,1567-1.541

New Mexico

816.00.382345-0.823

New York

9,329.81.21,2193-0.210

North Carolina

4,348.01.390427-0.721

North Dakota

419.2-1.095322-1.234

Ohio

5,383.60.692025-0.823

Oklahoma

1,593.30.784340-1.234

Oregon

1,905.31.896919-0.19

Pennsylvania

5,836.51.01,00217-1.131

Rhode Island

484.50.897318-1.844

South Carolina

2,027.20.882843-0.516

South Dakota

426.20.480347-0.721

Tennessee

2,953.31.190328-1.234

Texas

12,008.91.41,03212-1.029

Utah

1,444.12.687930-0.210

Vermont

310.30.186933-1.439

Virginia

3,843.61.01,05311-0.823

Washington

3,343.42.01,20851.71

West Virginia

694.00.2826441.13

Wisconsin

2,866.90.587632-1.029

Wyoming

276.20.3868350.37

Puerto Rico

862.8-3.1509(3)-2.7(3)

Virgin Islands

36.9-1.1763(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.

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2018