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News Release Information

20-1154-CHI
Monday, June 29, 2020

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

County Employment and Wages in Michigan — Fourth Quarter 2019

Employment rose in 7 of Michigan’s 10 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 employment increased 1.4 percent over the year in Washtenaw County, 1.1 percent in Ottawa County, and 0.9 percent in both Genesee and Ingham Counties. (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 10 largest counties in Michigan, employment was highest in Oakland County (753,000) and Wayne County (746,100) in December 2019. Kent and Macomb Counties had employment levels of 414,000 and 334,100, respectively. Together, the 10 largest Michigan counties accounted for 70.7 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 355 largest counties made up 73.7 percent of total U.S. employment.

All 10 large Michigan 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 Genesee and Ingham Counties, up 7.5 percent and 4.6 percent, respectively. In Wayne County, average weekly wages increased 4.1 percent. Oakland County had the highest average weekly wage among the state’s largest counties at $1,311. 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 73 counties in Michigan with employment below 75,000. Wage levels in all of these smaller counties were below the national average in December 2019. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

The 7.5-percent annual average weekly wage gain in Genesee County ranked 10th among the nation’s 355 largest counties in the fourth quarter of 2019. Wage increases in Ingham and Wayne Counties also ranked in the top 100 of the nation’s large counties at 60th and 98th, respectively. Two other counties, Kent (3.7 percent) and Oakland (3.6 percent), had wage gains that were higher than the national rate of 3.5 percent. The remaining large counties had over-the-year wage gains that placed in the bottom half of the ranking.

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 3 of the state’s 10 large counties were above the national average of $1,185 in the fourth quarter of 2019. Average weekly wages in Oakland County ($1,311), Wayne County ($1,264), and Washtenaw County ($1,204) ranked 53rd, 64th, and 82nd, respectively, in the top quarter of the national ranking. The average weekly wage in Saginaw County ($943) ranked 287th among 355 largest U.S. counties.

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 Michigan’s smaller counties

All 73 smaller counties in Michigan–those with employment below 75,000–reported average weekly wages below the national average of $1,185. Among these smaller counties, Midland posted the highest weekly wage, $1,167, followed by Kalkaska ($1,055), Calhoun ($1,033), and Jackson ($1,024). Keweenaw County reported the lowest average wage in the state at $584 per week, followed by Ontonagon County at $603 per week.

When all 83 counties in Michigan were considered, 2 reported average weekly wages of less than $650, 9 registered wages from $650 to $749, 33 had wages from $750 to $849, 19 had wages from $850 to $949, and 20 reported 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 10 largest counties in Michigan, 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--$1,185--3.5--

Michigan

4,385.30.4--1,115183.422

Genesee

139.00.91849872457.510

Ingham

155.60.91841,1261314.660

Kalamazoo

121.5-0.63221,0521860.8336

Kent

414.00.42411,0262073.7133

Macomb

334.10.72041,1471183.2181

Oakland

753.0-0.12951,311533.6140

Ottawa

128.61.11601,0022281.7304

Saginaw

84.9-0.43059432872.4255

Washtenaw

224.01.41321,204822.6234

Wayne

746.10.72041,264644.198

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

United States(2)

149,857,130$1,185

Michigan

4,385,2951,115

Alcona

1,762768

Alger

2,327848

Allegan

39,706988

Alpena

11,370861

Antrim

5,017698

Arenac

4,258777

Baraga

2,914879

Barry

12,650841

Bay

34,483881

Benzie

4,164732

Berrien

60,321963

Branch

14,378860

Calhoun

54,2821,033

Cass

9,312846

Charlevoix

9,979905

Cheboygan

5,673731

Chippewa

12,341806

Clare

6,406815

Clinton

16,400924

Crawford

4,106845

Delta

13,775807

Dickinson

13,398977

Eaton

42,3501,009

Emmet

18,290878

Genesee

139,015987

Gladwin

3,931786

Gogebic

5,423759

Grand Traverse

50,278945

Gratiot

12,753977

Hillsdale

12,640891

Houghton

11,557855

Huron

11,040827

Ingham

155,5581,126

Ionia

21,748734

Iosco

7,770864

Iron

3,663792

Isabella

28,472806

Jackson

57,1481,024

Kalamazoo

121,4661,052

Kalkaska

4,0901,055

Kent

414,0451,026

Keweenaw

367584

Lake

1,817735

Lapeer

20,796827

Leelanau

6,052790

Lenawee

25,497860

Livingston

63,474953

Luce

1,758805

Mackinac

3,292778

Macomb

334,1321,147

Manistee

6,963841

Marquette

26,682885

Mason

9,997846

Mecosta

13,600793

Menominee

7,235750

Midland

37,1461,167

Missaukee

3,419781

Monroe

39,912992

Montcalm

16,255821

Montmorency

1,990721

Muskegon

61,731895

Newaygo

12,150810

Oakland

752,9921,311

Oceana

6,153768

Ogemaw

5,548678

Ontonagon

1,303603

Osceola

7,445914

Oscoda

1,494696

Otsego

10,103849

Ottawa

128,6461,002

Presque Isle

2,611782

Roscommon

5,137695

Saginaw

84,873943

St. Clair

44,674942

St. Joseph

23,018778

Sanilac

10,400767

Schoolcraft

2,551879

Shiawassee

15,675837

Tuscola

11,828848

Van Buren

20,989857

Washtenaw

223,9921,204

Wayne

746,0701,264

Wexford

14,112816

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