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News Release Information

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

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

Occupational Employment and Wages in Fort Wayne — May 2022

Workers in the Fort Wayne, IN Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $25.16 in May 2022, 15 percent below the nationwide average of $29.76, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Jason Palmer noted that, after testing for statistical significance, wages in the local area were lower than their respective national averages in 20 of the 22 major occupational groups, including legal; computer and mathematical; and arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, Fort Wayne area employment was more highly concentrated in 7 of the 22 occupational groups, including production, transportation and material moving, and healthcare practitioners and technical. Fourteen groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including management, business and financial operations, and computer and mathematical. (See table A.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Fort Wayne metropolitan area, and measures of statistical significance, May 2022
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Fort Wayne United States Fort Wayne Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100.0 100.0 $29.76 $25.16* -15


6.7 4.7* 63.08 52.64* -17

Business and financial operations

6.5 4.8* 41.39 32.61* -21

Computer and mathematical

3.4 1.7* 51.99 37.74* -27

Architecture and engineering

1.7 1.7* 45.52 37.68* -17

Life, physical, and social science

0.9 0.5* 40.21 33.74* -16

Community and social service

1.6 1.4* 26.81 23.21* -13


0.8 0.6* 59.87 43.99* -27

Educational instruction and library

5.7 4.7* 30.41 23.72* -22

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.4 1.2* 36.78 25.40* -31

Healthcare practitioners and technical

6.1 7.3* 46.52 46.35 0

Healthcare support

4.6 4.3* 17.10 16.29* -5

Protective service

2.3 1.6* 25.97 25.27* -3

Food preparation and serving related

8.5 8.6* 15.45 13.27* -14

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

2.9 2.8* 17.26 15.60* -10

Personal care and service

1.9 1.6* 17.41 14.50* -17

Sales and related

8.9 9.2* 24.22 21.97* -9

Office and administrative support

12.6 11.7* 21.90 20.04* -8

Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.1* 18.21 17.31* -5

Construction and extraction

4.1 4.1 28.08 27.32* -3

Installation, maintenance, and repair

3.9 4.4* 26.77 24.95* -7


5.9 12.3* 21.81 21.87 0

Transportation and material moving

9.2 10.6* 21.12 19.22* -9

(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in the Fort Wayne, IN Metropolitan Statistical Area is above the national mean wage, while a negative difference reflects a lower wage.
* The mean hourly wage or percent share of employment is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.

One occupational group—production—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Fort Wayne had 26,730 jobs in production, accounting for 12.3 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 5.9-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $21.87, compared to the national wage of $21.81.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the production group included miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators (8,370), machinists (2,200), and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers (1,550). Among the higher-paying jobs in this group were power plant operators and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers, with mean hourly wages of $32.92 and $30.85, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were laundry and dry-cleaning workers ($13.07) and bakers ($15.21). (Detailed data for the production occupations are presented in table 1; for a complete listing of detailed occupations available go to

Location quotients allow us to explore the occupational make-up of a metropolitan area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. (See table 1.) For example, a location quotient of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in the area than it does nationally. In the Fort Wayne area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in many of the occupations within the production group. For instance, metal-refining furnace operators and tenders were employed at 10.5 times the national rate in Fort Wayne, and extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic, at 5.6 times the U.S. average. Laundry and dry-cleaning workers had a location quotient of 1.0 in Fort Wayne, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

These statistics are from the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

Changes to the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) Data

The May 2022 OEWS estimates use the model-based (MB3) estimation method implemented with the May 2021 estimates release. Additional updates were made to the MB3 wage processing methodology for May 2022. For more information, see the May 2022 Survey Methods and Reliability Statement.

The May 2022 estimates are the first OEWS estimates to be produced using the 2022 NAICS, which replaces the 2017 NAICS used for the May 2017-May 2021 estimates. See North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) at BLS for details.

Technical Note

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OEWS data available from BLS include cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation; over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), nonmetropolitan areas, and territories; national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-digit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels, and national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. OEWS data are available at

The OEWS survey is a cooperative effort between BLS and the State Workforce Agencies (SWAs). BLS funds the survey and provides the procedures and technical support, while the State Workforce Agencies collect most of the data. OEWS estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.1 million establishments. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 179,000 to 187,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by Internet or other electronic means, mail, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2022 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2022, November 2021, May 2021, November 2020, May 2020, and November 2019. The unweighted sampled employment of 80 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 57 percent of total national employment. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 65.4 percent based on establishments and 62.5 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The sample in the Fort Wayne, IN Metropolitan Statistical Area included 2,071 establishments with a response rate of 74 percent. For more information about OEWS concepts and methodology, go to

A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between two values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

The Fort Wayne, IN Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Allen County, Wells County, and Whitley County.

For more information

Answers to frequently asked questions about the OEWS data are available at Detailed information about the OEWS program is available at

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.

Table 1. Employment and wage data for production occupations, Fort Wayne metropolitan area, May 2022
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages
Level (2) Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Production occupations

26,730 2.1 $21.87 $45,480

First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

1,550 1.6 30.85 64,170

Electrical, electronic, and electromechanical assemblers, except coil winders, tapers, and finishers

770 1.9 17.69 36,790

Engine and other machine assemblers

40 0.6 23.06 47,960

Structural metal fabricators and fitters

90 1.0 21.04 43,770

Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators

8,370 3.9 22.68 47,170


150 0.5 15.21 31,630

Butchers and meat cutters

160 0.9 16.52 34,350

Food and tobacco roasting, baking, and drying machine operators and tenders

50 1.8 19.05 39,620

Food batchmakers

370 1.5 20.24 42,090

Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

520 5.6 21.42 44,550

Rolling machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

220 5.4 28.53 59,340

Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

970 3.6 18.59 38,660

Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

280 2.6 19.82 41,220

Lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

150 5.3 21.82 45,380


2,200 4.7 22.63 47,070

Metal-refining furnace operators and tenders

300 10.5 28.79 59,890

Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

860 3.5 17.46 36,310

Multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

490 2.4 17.87 37,170

Tool and die makers

290 3.2 27.83 57,880

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers

710 1.2 21.61 44,960

Welding, soldering, and brazing machine setters, operators, and tenders

150 3.3 20.43 42,490

Heat treating equipment setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

100 4.3 21.07 43,820

Plating machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

140 2.9 17.35 36,080

Metal workers and plastic workers, all other

40 1.1 20.14 41,880

Printing press operators

360 1.6 21.20 44,100

Print binding and finishing workers

50 0.8 19.32 40,180

Laundry and dry-cleaning workers

260 1.0 13.07 27,190

Sewing machine operators

270 1.6 16.35 34,010


60 1.6 21.01 43,690

Cabinetmakers and bench carpenters

220 1.5 18.58 38,640

Furniture finishers

80 3.8 16.55 34,410

Sawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, wood

60 0.8 16.50 34,320

Woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders, except sawing

160 1.7 18.15 37,750

Power plant operators

30 0.7 32.92 68,480

Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators

160 0.9 25.13 52,270

Chemical equipment operators and tenders

60 0.3 22.09 45,940

Separating, filtering, clarifying, precipitating, and still machine setters, operators, and tenders

40 0.5 17.11 35,590

Grinding and polishing workers, hand

60 2.7 17.67 36,750

Mixing and blending machine setters, operators, and tenders

360 2.3 22.43 46,650

Cutting and slicing machine setters, operators, and tenders

210 2.6 19.49 40,530

Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

100 1.1 20.75 43,160

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

1,300 1.5 21.40 44,520

Dental laboratory technicians

80 1.7 18.36 38,190

Ophthalmic laboratory technicians

30 1.1 15.92 33,110

Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

500 0.9 17.49 36,370

Painting, coating, and decorating workers

90 5.3 19.75 41,090

Coating, painting, and spraying machine setters, operators, and tenders

450 2.0 20.03 41,660

Computer numerically controlled tool operators

640 2.4 22.03 45,820

Computer numerically controlled tool programmers

100 2.4 27.22 56,620

Cleaning, washing, and metal pickling equipment operators and tenders

30 1.7 16.75 34,850

Etchers and engravers

40 3.3 22.77 47,350

Molders, shapers, and casters, except metal and plastic

120 2.1 18.94 39,400

Paper goods machine setters, operators, and tenders

240 1.7 19.48 40,510

Helpers--production workers

140 0.5 16.54 34,400

Production workers, all other

90 0.2 19.39 40,320

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Fort Wayne, IN Metropolitan Statistical Area, see
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations may not sum to the totals due to rounding, and because the totals may include occupations that are not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(3) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.
(4) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a 'year-round, full-time' hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.


Last Modified Date: Wednesday, July 26, 2023