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News Release Information

20-342-CHI
Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Contacts

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

County Employment and Wages in North Dakota — Third Quarter 2019

Employment increased 1.5 percent in North Dakota’s only large county, Cass, from September 2018 to September 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 in September 2019, Cass County’s employment totaled 121,500 and accounted for 28.4 percent of total employment within the state.

Nationally, employment increased 1.1 percent over the year with 283 of the 355 largest U.S. counties reporting increases. New Hanover, NC, had the largest percentage increase in the country, up 5.8 percent over the year. Bay, FL, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment with a loss of 5.9 percent.

The average weekly wage in Cass County was $991 in the third quarter of 2019, an increase of 3.7 percent from the third quarter of 2018. Nationally, the average weekly wage rose 3.6 percent over the year to $1,093 in the third quarter of 2019. (See table 1.)  

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 52 counties in North Dakota with employment below 75,000. Wage levels in 43 of these smaller counties were below the national average in September 2019. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

The 3.7-percent annual average weekly wage gain in Cass County ranked 151st among the nation’s 355 -largest counties in the third quarter of 2019. Nationally, 350 of the 355 largest counties had over-the-year wage increases. Boulder, CO, had the largest percentage wage increase (+18.4 percent). The remaining five large counties registered wage declines during the period. Linn, IA, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease (-2.6 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Cass County’s $991 average weekly wage placed in the middle third among the 355 largest U.S. counties, ranking 181st. Nationally, 98 large counties reported average weekly wages above the U.S. average in the third quarter of 2019. Santa Clara, CA, had the highest average weekly wage at $2,447.

Average weekly wages were below the national average in 257 large U.S. counties. At $659 a week, Cameron, TX, had the lowest average weekly wage.

Average weekly wages in North Dakota’s smaller counties

Among the 52 counties in North Dakota with employment below 75,000, 43 counties had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,093. The nine small counties with weekly wages above the U.S. average were located in the western portion of the state. McKenzie County had the highest weekly wage at $1,565, followed by Williams ($1,549) and Oliver ($1,532). Sheridan County had the lowest weekly wage in the state, averaging $511 in the third quarter of 2019.

When all 53 counties in North Dakota were considered, 11 reported average weekly wages of less than $700, 14 registered wages from $700 to $799, 9 had wages from $800 to $899, and 19 had average weekly wages of $900 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 fourth quarter 2019 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, May 20, 2020. The County Employment and Wages full data update for fourth quarter 2019 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, June 3, 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 largest county in North Dakota, third quarter 2019
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
September 2019 (thousands) Percent change, September 2018-19 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, third quarter 2018-19 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

148,556.5 1.1 -- $1,093 -- 3.6 --

North Dakota

428.4 0.9 -- 1,028 19 3.3 32

Cass

121.5 1.5 110 991 181 3.7 151

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 North Dakota, third quarter 2019
Area Employment September 2019 Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

148,556,525 $1,093

North Dakota

428,359 1,028

Adams

1,005 770

Barnes

4,553 747

Benson

2,023 791

Billings

730 721

Bottineau

2,476 849

Bowman

1,607 937

Burke

703 1,081

Burleigh

56,260 992

Cass

121,504 991

Cavalier

1,395 794

Dickey

1,819 718

Divide

756 983

Dunn

2,204 1,313

Eddy

766 635

Emmons

986 673

Foster

1,548 864

Golden Valley

611 685

Grand Forks

39,985 921

Grant

565 664

Griggs

833 693

Hettinger

704 851

Kidder

756 697

LaMoure

1,357 718

Logan

641 579

McHenry

1,320 937

McIntosh

1,046 694

McKenzie

12,661 1,565

McLean

3,454 1,132

Mercer

4,179 1,254

Morton

11,842 899

Mountrail

6,489 1,294

Nelson

999 650

Oliver

858 1,532

Pembina

3,677 896

Pierce

1,608 768

Ramsey

5,734 786

Ransom

2,060 679

Renville

759 727

Richland

7,832 789

Rolette

4,443 729

Sargent

3,631 832

Sheridan

244 511

Sioux

1,554 902

Slope

144 1,366

Stark

20,051 1,209

Steele

582 953

Stutsman

10,842 859

Towner

704 772

Traill

3,445 842

Walsh

5,135 801

Ward

32,000 994

Wells

1,448 708

Williams

30,581 1,549

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 2019
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
September 2019 (thousands) Percent change, September 2018-19 Average weekly wage National ranking by level Percent change, third quarter 2018-19 National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

148,556.5 1.1 $1,093 -- 3.6 --

Alabama

1,989.5 1.1 919 36 3.8 18

Alaska

338.0 1.2 1,105 14 3.7 21

Arizona

2,913.4 2.6 1,018 22 4.5 4

Arkansas

1,222.8 0.0 841 49 3.8 18

California

17,713.1 1.4 1,309 5 3.8 18

Colorado

2,749.0 2.4 1,170 8 6.1 1

Connecticut

1,676.6 -0.3 1,236 6 2.3 50

Delaware

453.2 1.1 1,078 15 3.3 32

District of Columbia

776.4 0.6 1,851 1 2.5 49

Florida

8,838.2 1.7 955 29 3.4 27

Georgia

4,509.7 1.4 1,026 20 3.4 27

Hawaii

654.1 -0.3 1,012 23 3.9 15

Idaho

765.2 2.9 838 50 4.1 10

Illinois

6,023.1 0.0 1,125 10 3.6 23

Indiana

3,083.5 0.3 914 37 3.5 26

Iowa

1,556.9 0.1 914 37 3.0 39

Kansas

1,395.9 0.4 893 43 2.9 43

Kentucky

1,910.8 0.7 884 45 3.4 27

Louisiana

1,913.5 -0.3 923 35 2.6 47

Maine

632.6 0.9 887 44 4.2 7

Maryland

2,696.9 0.2 1,169 9 3.6 23

Massachusetts

3,642.5 0.9 1,359 2 4.2 7

Michigan

4,375.8 0.2 1,021 21 3.0 39

Minnesota

2,917.8 0.4 1,107 13 3.0 39

Mississippi

1,135.8 0.1 768 51 2.7 46

Missouri

2,826.5 0.6 942 31 3.9 15

Montana

478.9 1.2 848 48 3.9 15

Nebraska

984.7 0.3 908 39 4.0 13

Nevada

1,412.2 2.1 973 26 4.1 10

New Hampshire

667.9 0.8 1,075 16 3.4 27

New Jersey

4,104.0 0.9 1,217 7 3.0 39

New Mexico

842.1 1.7 899 40 5.1 2

New York

9,575.4 1.1 1,314 4 3.3 32

North Carolina

4,501.3 2.2 972 27 3.6 23

North Dakota

428.4 0.9 1,028 19 3.3 32

Ohio

5,443.3 0.3 976 25 3.1 37

Oklahoma

1,628.8 0.5 897 41 2.6 47

Oregon

1,970.7 1.4 1,037 18 3.2 35

Pennsylvania

5,947.9 0.8 1,064 17 3.2 35

Rhode Island

491.3 0.6 991 24 2.8 44

South Carolina

2,132.4 2.2 866 46 3.7 21

South Dakota

433.4 0.4 855 47 3.4 27

Tennessee

3,060.8 1.9 966 28 2.8 44

Texas

12,603.2 2.1 1,109 12 4.1 10

Utah

1,535.2 2.8 954 30 4.8 3

Vermont

311.0 0.0 927 34 4.3 5

Virginia

3,931.4 1.0 1,125 10 4.0 13

Washington

3,489.8 2.1 1,335 3 4.3 5

West Virginia

694.4 -1.8 897 41 0.3 51

Wisconsin

2,893.8 0.1 929 33 3.1 37

Wyoming

283.1 1.5 942 31 4.2 7

Puerto Rico

878.9 1.9 528 (3) -0.8 (3)

Virgin Islands

37.8 9.6 1,012 (3) 12.8 (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: Wednesday, March 25, 2020