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News Release Information

20-1153-CHI
Monday, June 29, 2020

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

County Employment and Wages in Illinois — Fourth Quarter 2019

Employment increased in 5 of Illinois’ 13 large counties from December 2018 to December 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.) Acting Regional Commissioner Julie Wilson noted that Will County (2.1 percent) and Sangamon County (2.0 percent) had the fastest rates of job growth. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment increased 1.2 percent over the year with 285 of the 355 largest U.S. counties reporting increases. Cleveland, OK, had the largest percentage increase in the country, up 5.8 percent over the year. Ector, TX, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment with a loss of 4.2 percent.

Among the 13 largest counties in Illinois, employment was highest in Cook County (2,636,500) in December 2019. DuPage and Lake Counties had employment levels of 617,200 and 339,700, respectively. Together, the 13 largest Illinois counties accounted for 80.9 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 355 largest counties made up 73.7 percent of total U.S. employment.

Twelve of Illinois’ large counties reported average weekly wage gains from the fourth quarter of 2018 to the fourth quarter of 2019, with the fastest rates of increase in Sangamon and Peoria Counties, up 6.0 percent and 4.9 percent, respectively. Lake County had the highest average weekly wage among the state’s largest counties at $1,458. Nationally, the average weekly wage increased 3.5 percent from a year ago to $1,185 in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 89 counties in Illinois with employment below 75,000. With the exception of Rock Island and Grundy Counties, wage levels in the remaining small counties were below the national average in December 2019. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

The 6.0-percent annual average weekly wage gain in Sangamon County ranked 18th among the nation’s 355 largest counties in the fourth quarter of 2019. Over-the-year wage changes among Illinois’ remaining 12 large counties ranged from a 4.9-percent increase in Peoria County to a 0.4-percent decrease in Winnebago County.

Nationally, 341 of the 355 largest counties had over-the-year wage increases. Santa Cruz, CA, had the largest percentage wage increase (20.7 percent). The remaining 14 large counties had wage declines during the period. Linn, IA, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease (-7.1 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Weekly wages in three of the state’s large counties were above the national average of $1,185 in the fourth quarter of 2019. Lake County ($1,458), had the highest average weekly wage in the state, ranking 24th among the 355 largest U.S. counties. Average weekly wages in Cook ($1,369) and DuPage ($1,301) Counties ranked in the top quarter for the nation. The average weekly wage in St. Clair County ($907) ranked 316th.

Nationally, 93 large counties reported average weekly wages at or above the U.S. average in the fourth quarter of 2019. Santa Clara, CA, had the highest average weekly wage at $2,825. Average weekly wages were below the national average in 262 counties. At $701 a week, Cameron, TX, had the lowest average weekly wage.

Average weekly wages in Illinois’ smaller counties

Two of the 89 smaller counties in Illinois–those with employment below 75,000–reported average weekly wages above the national average of $1,185. Rock Island and Grundy Counties reported average weekly wages of $1,362 and $1,201, respectively. The remaining 87 smaller counties in Illinois reported average weekly wages below the national average. Among these smaller counties, Pope County posted the lowest average wage in the state at $560 per week, followed by Calhoun County at $567 per week.

When all 102 counties in Illinois were considered, 23 reported average weekly wages of less than $750, 34 registered wages from $750 to $849, 25 had wages from $850 to $949, and 20 had average weekly wages of $950 or more. (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 this news release. Tables and additional content from the 2018 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online are now available at www.bls.gov/cew/publications/employment-and-wages-annual-averages/2018/home.htm. The 2019 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2020.

The County Employment and Wages release for first quarter 2020 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, August 19, 2020. The County Employment and Wages full data update for first quarter 2020 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, September 2, 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. 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 13 largest counties in Illinois, fourth quarter 2019
AreaEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
December 2019 (thousands)Percent change, December 2018-19 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)Average weekly wageNational ranking by level (3)Percent change, fourth quarter 2018-19 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

149,857.11.2--1185--3.5--

Illinois

6,043.50.2--1221102.738

Champaign

92.91.41329802533.4161

Cook

2,636.50.32511369442.5246

DuPage

617.2-0.93351301551.5315

Kane

211.9-1.134010332032.3261

Lake

339.7-0.73271458240.8336

Madison

103.10.72049173071.3324

McHenry

96.7-0.83319273022.2272

McLean

82.30.02869912412.6234

Peoria

103.6-2.435211571084.949

Sangamon

132.02.07311281286.018

St. Clair

93.6-0.93359073164.379

Will

254.02.1669712610.9333

Winnebago

126.3-1.2343967269-0.4345

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. 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 Illinois, fourth quarter 2019
AreaEmployment December 2019Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

149,857,1301,185

Illinois

6,043,5151,221

Adams

32,796902

Alexander

1,013725

Bond

4,527812

Boone

18,8201,055

Brown

4,584953

Bureau

11,102850

Calhoun

711567

Carroll

4,101862

Cass

5,518825

Champaign

92,937980

Christian

9,818794

Clark

4,759743

Clay

5,162760

Clinton

12,377786

Coles

23,668768

Cook

2,636,4861,369

Crawford

7,195944

Cumberland

2,884714

De Kalb

36,887924

De Witt

4,9481,091

Douglas

7,537816

Du Page

617,1611,301

Edgar

6,901910

Edwards

2,189803

Effingham

22,741831

Fayette

5,503708

Ford

4,737854

Franklin

8,886761

Fulton

8,216725

Gallatin

1,167999

Greene

2,382678

Grundy

21,5691,201

Hamilton

2,033859

Hancock

4,058729

Hardin

680640

Henderson

1,258638

Henry

14,201802

Iroquois

7,696727

Jackson

25,111805

Jasper

2,041778

Jefferson

20,000875

Jersey

4,814725

Jo Daviess

6,979756

Johnson

2,345821

Kane

211,9241,033

Kankakee

44,869878

Kendall

28,825841

Knox

17,473723

La Salle

41,551905

Lake

339,6731,458

Lawrence

4,500824

Lee

13,085920

Livingston

13,953929

Logan

9,043854

Macon

47,9871,009

Macoupin

10,435763

Madison

103,070917

Marion

13,003754

Marshall

2,853781

Mason

2,886845

Massac

3,056855

McDonough

10,677798

McHenry

96,727927

McLean

82,345991

Menard

1,681693

Mercer

3,047670

Monroe

8,103761

Montgomery

8,601817

Morgan

14,237818

Moultrie

5,244793

Ogle

14,787924

Peoria

103,5661,157

Perry

4,652787

Piatt

3,506734

Pike

3,958684

Pope

473560

Pulaski

1,475953

Putnam

1,6761,170

Randolph

12,384884

Richland

5,944777

Rock Island

73,7681,362

Saline

7,518662

Sangamon

131,9671,128

Schuyler

1,457838

Scott

999773

Shelby

5,080740

St. Clair

93,556907

Stark

1,377858

Stephenson

17,573850

Tazewell

47,755895

Union

5,076680

Vermilion

26,728882

Wabash

3,429814

Warren

6,267743

Washington

6,424968

Wayne

3,973663

White

4,250771

Whiteside

21,382791

Will

253,968971

Williamson

28,572802

Winnebago

126,348967

Woodford

10,215879

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

United States (2)

149,857.11.2$1,185--3.5--

Alabama

2,007.91.0985362.639

Alaska

309.90.61,139163.227

Arizona

2,999.82.71,059234.17

Arkansas

1,232.90.5898503.227

California

17,836.31.51,45744.74

Colorado

2,772.62.21,22794.08

Connecticut

1,687.4-0.71,38353.811

Delaware

455.30.81,136172.639

District of Columbia

782.50.81,99212.542

Florida

9,085.52.01,044263.614

Georgia

4,576.11.71,090213.614

Hawaii

665.1-0.81,053243.517

Idaho

756.93.1918463.132

Illinois

6,043.50.21,221102.738

Indiana

3,106.00.6969383.034

Iowa

1,560.40.1984371.947

Kansas

1,410.70.6959403.517

Kentucky

1,928.30.8955413.227

Louisiana

1,927.7-0.5993342.542

Maine

620.20.7955415.32

Maryland

2,728.10.91,27183.517

Massachusetts

3,660.80.91,51123.811

Michigan

4,385.30.41,115183.422

Minnesota

2,912.80.41,177143.227

Mississippi

1,145.00.0818513.227

Missouri

2,846.20.91,010323.034

Montana

474.11.1918463.422

Nebraska

990.90.7969384.26

Nevada

1,435.52.71,030292.445

New Hampshire

671.30.81,192122.937

New Jersey

4,157.40.81,33272.542

New Mexico

844.01.5942444.08

New York

9,691.00.81,49933.713

North Carolina

4,546.91.91,036282.445

North Dakota

424.60.51,085222.639

Ohio

5,477.20.51,037273.132

Oklahoma

1,639.40.3945431.449

Oregon

1,969.31.61,100194.65

Pennsylvania

5,985.90.81,143153.614

Rhode Island

489.80.61,099201.150

South Carolina

2,144.81.2931454.08

South Dakota

430.70.6916483.517

Tennessee

3,085.41.61,047251.648

Texas

12,793.02.01,187133.422

Utah

1,547.82.51,022305.03

Vermont

314.0-0.4987353.517

Virginia

3,978.71.21,204113.422

Washington

3,457.72.21,37066.41

West Virginia

690.3-2.090449-1.451

Wisconsin

2,898.00.21,022303.326

Wyoming

276.31.41,007333.034

Puerto Rico

910.71.5575(3)-0.2(3)

Virgin Islands

39.210.81,065(3)13.5(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. Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.

 

Last Modified Date: Monday, June 29, 2020