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News Release Information

19-2061-CHI
Friday, December 20, 2019

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Technical information:
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  • (312) 353-1138

County Employment and Wages in Iowa — Second Quarter 2019

Three of the four large counties in Iowa reported employment growth from June 2018 to June 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are those with annual average employment levels of 75,000 or more in 2018.) Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Charlene Peiffer noted that Polk County had the largest increase, up 0.6 percent, followed by Scott (0.3 percent) and Linn (0.1 percent) Counties. Johnson County had an over-the-year employment decrease of 0.7 percent. Nationally, employment increased 1.1 percent. (See table 1.)

Among the four largest counties in Iowa, employment was highest in Polk County (307,300) in June 2019. Collectively, Iowa’s four large counties accounted for 39.0 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 355 largest counties made up 73.4 percent of total U.S. employment, which stood at 149.1 million in June 2019.

The average weekly wage in Scott County rose 3.0 percent from the second quarter of 2018 to the second quarter of 2019, the largest increase among Iowa’s large counties. Polk County had the highest average weekly wage in the state at $1,059. (See table 1.) Nationally, the average weekly wage rose 3.8 percent over the year to $1,095 in the second quarter of 2019.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 95 counties in Iowa 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

All four of Iowa’s large counties recorded wage growth below the national increase of 3.8 percent from the second quarter of 2018 to the second quarter of 2019. (See table 1.) Scott County’s 3.0-percent increase in average weekly wages ranked 220th among the 355 largest U.S. counties. The state’s remaining three large counties all placed in the lowest quintile of the national ranking.

Among the 355 largest U.S. counties, 347 had over-the-year increases in average weekly wages in the second quarter of 2019. Benton, AR, ranked first in average weekly wage growth with a gain of 16.3 percent, followed by San Francisco, CA, at 15.5 percent.

Eight of the 355 largest U.S. counties experienced over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. McLean, IL, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in average weekly wages with a loss of 5.8 percent.

Large county average weekly wages

Average weekly wages in all four large Iowa counties were below the national average of $1,095 in the second quarter of 2019. As noted, Polk County ($1,059) had the highest average weekly wage in the state and ranked 123rd among the 355 largest U.S. counties. Scott County ($867) reported the lowest average weekly wage among Iowa’s large counties and ranked 303rd nationwide.

Nationwide, weekly wages were higher than the U.S. average of $1,095 in 93 of the largest U.S. counties. Santa Clara, CA, held the top position with an average weekly wage of $2,612. San Francisco, CA, was second at $2,430, followed by San Mateo, CA ($2,373), and New York, NY ($2,109).

Nationwide, 260 large U.S. counties reported average weekly wages below the national average. Horry, SC ($649) reported the lowest weekly wage, followed by the Texas counties of Hidalgo ($657), Cameron ($659), and Webb ($697).

Average weekly wages in Iowa’s smaller counties

All of the 95 smaller counties in Iowa, those with employment below 75,000, had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,095. Among these smaller counties, Dallas County had the highest average weekly wage at $1,055 and Decatur County had the lowest at $651. (See table 2.)

When all 99 counties in Iowa were considered, 36 reported average weekly wages of $749 or lower, 28 reported wages from $750 to $799, 18 had wages from $800 to $849, and 17 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 2018 edition of this publication, which was published in September 2019, contains selected data produced by Business Employment Dynamics (BED) on job gains and losses, as well as selected data from the first quarter 2019 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from the 2018 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages are now available online at www.bls.gov/cew/publications/employment-and-wages-annual-averages/2018/home.htm. The 2019 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Online will be available in September 2020.

The County Employment and Wages release for third quarter 2019 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, February 20, 2020. The County Employment and Wages full data update for third quarter 2019 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, March 4, 2020.


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 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. 13, the number of weeks in a quarter, then divide the result. 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 4 largest counties in Iowa, second quarter 2019
AreaEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
June 2019 (thousands)Percent change, June 2018-19 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)Average weekly wageNational ranking by level (3)Percent change, second quarter 2018-19 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

149,089.21.1--$1,095--3.8--

Iowa

1,584.70.1--902402.545

Johnson, Iowa

83.6-0.73309911811.0340

Linn, Iowa

133.60.12691,0201591.2336

Polk, Iowa

307.30.62091,0591231.0340

Scott, Iowa

93.30.32498673033.0220

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 Iowa, second quarter 2019
AreaEmployment June 2019Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

149,089,158$1,095

Iowa

1,584,673902

Adair

3,023739

Adams

1,404723

Allamakee

5,201696

Appanoose

4,697698

Audubon

1,839701

Benton

6,254747

Black Hawk

74,104906

Boone

9,232781

Bremer

10,275790

Buchanan

6,816742

Buena Vista

11,125816

Butler

3,595689

Calhoun

2,968719

Carroll

11,764734

Cass

5,950732

Cedar

5,619743

Cerro Gordo

25,469809

Cherokee

4,893764

Chickasaw

5,059819

Clarke

4,543764

Clay

8,728787

Clayton

7,087772

Clinton

20,688780

Crawford

6,900803

Dallas

47,2411,055

Davis

2,106726

Decatur

2,415651

Delaware

6,907820

Des Moines

21,922781

Dickinson

11,284709

Dubuque

59,800875

Emmet

3,772754

Fayette

7,279703

Floyd

6,274808

Franklin

4,126819

Fremont

2,050732

Greene

3,403798

Grundy

4,350845

Guthrie

3,246773

Hamilton

5,914791

Hancock

6,441878

Hardin

7,015768

Harrison

4,214712

Henry

9,364804

Howard

4,279700

Humboldt

3,971815

Ida

3,881835

Iowa

10,393786

Jackson

6,497653

Jasper

11,984775

Jefferson

7,841778

Johnson

83,635991

Jones

6,444747

Keokuk

2,293745

Kossuth

7,000802

Lee

15,641847

Linn

133,5901,020

Louisa

3,898759

Lucas

3,771741

Lyon

4,888701

Madison

4,038719

Mahaska

8,097796

Marion

18,619906

Marshall

16,881849

Mills

3,633809

Mitchell

5,107880

Monona

2,657673

Monroe

3,627980

Montgomery

4,298764

Muscatine

23,620948

O'Brien

6,783726

Osceola

2,499772

Page

6,387774

Palo Alto

3,889725

Plymouth

12,022902

Pocahontas

3,325866

Polk

307,2961,059

Pottawattamie

40,768816

Poweshiek

10,108868

Ringgold

1,432690

Sac

3,132708

Scott

93,301867

Shelby

5,969749

Sioux

21,870797

Story

47,166973

Tama

5,713773

Taylor

2,064690

Union

6,106760

Van Buren

1,975742

Wapello

16,209790

Warren

12,119758

Washington

8,554689

Wayne

1,926781

Webster

18,543880

Winnebago

4,386700

Winneshiek

10,764779

Woodbury

52,226815

Worth

2,430701

Wright

6,360841

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, second quarter 2019
StateEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
June 2019 (thousands)Percent change, June 2018-19Average weekly wageNational ranking by levelPercent change, second quarter 2018-19National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

149,089.21.1$1,095--3.8--

Alabama

1,993.71.1911363.428

Alaska

338.90.71,078153.626

Arizona

2,843.32.61,010233.816

Arkansas

1,222.50.6862474.64

California

17,717.41.51,32544.73

Colorado

2,765.72.21,12894.92

Connecticut

1,690.8-0.81,26663.911

Delaware

458.00.81,057173.428

District of Columbia

780.40.51,77813.816

Florida

8,722.91.8968263.911

Georgia

4,507.11.71,016223.911

Hawaii

652.2-1.2992243.722

Idaho

765.12.6820503.333

Illinois

6,074.70.31,122102.447

Indiana

3,089.80.5910383.139

Iowa

1,584.70.1902402.545

Kansas

1,403.00.6905392.842

Kentucky

1,909.70.3911363.333

Louisiana

1,920.2-0.2923352.447

Maine

639.60.4874453.722

Maryland

2,733.60.71,17883.333

Massachusetts

3,690.10.91,37724.35

Michigan

4,419.70.11,018212.447

Minnesota

2,952.60.81,101132.644

Mississippi

1,135.90.4767512.051

Missouri

2,836.70.3948302.545

Montana

483.11.0843483.333

Nebraska

991.50.1889423.527

Nevada

1,408.82.6961293.238

New Hampshire

676.10.81,090144.010

New Jersey

4,182.50.71,23673.041

New Mexico

834.01.0888444.35

New York

9,682.81.01,34733.911

North Carolina

4,527.32.0970253.911

North Dakota

431.81.31,026204.17

Ohio

5,486.70.4965273.428

Oklahoma

1,618.50.5900413.139

Oregon

1,976.51.31,036183.816

Pennsylvania

5,972.10.81,070163.816

Rhode Island

494.50.71,034193.428

South Carolina

2,144.21.3867463.722

South Dakota

441.80.4838493.816

Tennessee

3,047.81.8964283.333

Texas

12,585.62.01,102123.816

Utah

1,526.13.0936324.17

Vermont

314.00.0929342.743

Virginia

3,981.61.01,113113.722

Washington

3,500.61.81,28855.91

West Virginia

700.4-0.6889422.447

Wisconsin

2,945.30.3940314.17

Wyoming

287.61.7932333.428

Puerto Rico

867.71.5531(3)-1.8(3)

Virgin Islands

37.010.0919(3)8.8(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: Friday, December 20, 2019