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News Release Information

18-369-ATL
Wednesday, March 21, 2018

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County Employment and Wages in South Carolina – Third Quarter 2017

Employment increased in six of South Carolina’s seven large counties from September 2016 to September 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are defined as those with 2016 annual average employment levels of 75,000 or more.) Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that York and Spartanburg Counties had the largest employment growth among South Carolina’s largest counties, increasing 3.6 and 3.5 percent, respectively. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment advanced 1.0 percent from September 2016 to September 2017 as 283 of the 346 largest U.S. counties registered increases. Midland, Texas, had the largest percentage increase in the country, up 10.4 percent over the year. Collier, Fla., had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment among the largest counties in the U.S., with a loss of 5.2 percent.

Among the seven largest counties in South Carolina, employment was highest in Greenville County (266,100) in September 2017. Two other counties, Charleston and Richland, had employment levels above 200,000. Together, South Carolina’s large counties accounted for 59.6 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 346 largest counties made up 72.7 percent of total U.S. employment, which stood at 144.5 million in September 2017.

From the third quarter of 2016 to the third quarter of 2017, five large South Carolina counties had over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. (See table 1.) Richland County was the only large county to register an increase in average weekly wages, up 0.8 percent. Charleston County recorded the highest average weekly wage among the state’s large counties at $902. Nationally, the average weekly wage declined 0.6 percent to $1,021 during the year ending in the third quarter of 2017.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 39 counties in South Carolina with employment levels below 75,000. Average weekly wages in these counties ranged from $1,191 to $556. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

Five of South Carolina’s seven large counties had over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. Greenville and Lexington Counties had the largest decreases in average weekly wages (-1.6 percent each). Average weekly wages in Horry County were unchanged for the year, while average weekly wages in Richland County were up 0.8 percent. (See table 1.)

Nationally, 265 of the 346 largest counties registered over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. Mercer, N.J., had the largest wage decline, down 8.8 percent from the third quarter of 2016, followed by Wyandotte, Kan. (-6.0 percent).

Among the largest U.S. counties, 71 experienced an over-the-year increase in average weekly wages. Midland, Texas, had the largest percentage increase in average weekly wages (8.4 percent), followed by Union, N.J (8.2 percent); Elkhart, Ind. (6.5 percent); Forsyth, N.C. (5.3 percent); and Maui + Kalawao, Hawaii (4.6 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Each of South Carolina’s seven large counties had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,021 in September 2017. Charleston, Richland, and Greenville Counties, with average weekly wages of $902, $893, and $877, respectively, placed in the middle third of the national ranking among the 346 largest U.S. counties in the third quarter of 2017. Average weekly wages in South Carolina’s four other large counties placed in the bottom third of the national ranking. (See table 1.)

Nationally, 96 large counties had average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,021 in the third quarter of 2017. Santa Clara, Calif., had the highest average weekly wage at $2,320, followed by San Mateo, Calif. ($2,123); and San Francisco, Calif. ($1,954).

Among the largest U.S. counties, 250 had weekly wages below the national average in the third quarter of 2017. Cameron, Texas, had the lowest wage ($612), followed by Horry, S.C. ($633); and Hidalgo, Texas ($649).

Average weekly wages in South Carolina’s smaller counties

Among the 39 smaller counties in South Carolina with employment below 75,000, Fairfield ($1,191) was the only county with an average weekly wage above the $1,021 national average. Clarendon County had the lowest weekly wage among all the counties in the state, averaging $556 in the third quarter of 2017. (See table 2.)

When all 46 counties in South Carolina were considered, 14 had wages below $699, 19 had wages from $700-$799, 9 had wages from $800-$899, and 4 had average weekly wages above $900. (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 2016 edition of this publication contains selected data produced by Business Employment Dynamics (BED) on job gains and losses, as well as selected data from the first quarter 2017 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2016 are now available online at www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn16.htm. The 2017 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2018.

The County Employment and Wages release for fourth quarter 2017 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, May 23, 2018.

QCEW Publication Acceleration and Conversion to Two Data Releases

The national QCEW publication process is accelerating for a more timely release. Beginning with the fourth quarter 2017 release, QCEW data will be published in two parts. The current County Employment and Wages news release and associated data will be accelerated and published first. The full QCEW data release will occur two weeks later, accompanied by a data release notice.


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 9.9 million employer reports cover 144.5 million full- and part-time workers. 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 7 largest counties in South Carolina, third quarter 2017
AreaEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands)Percent change, September 2016-17 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)Average weekly wageNational ranking by level (3)Percent change, third quarter 2016-17 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

144,464.41.0--$1,021---0.6--

South Carolina

2,027.20.8--82843-0.516

Charleston, S.C.

244.70.4233902197-1.4195

Greenville, S.C.

266.11.4104877230-1.6217

Horry, S.C.

127.81.31146333450.072

Lexington, S.C.

118.52.252778323-1.6217

Richland, S.C.

218.1-0.63118932090.838

Spartanburg, S.C.

138.43.513856254-1.0156

York, S.C.

93.73.611825283-0.5111

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 South Carolina, third quarter 2017
AreaEmployment September 2017Average weekly wage(1)

United States(2)

144,464,425$1,021

South Carolina

2,027,228828

Abbeville

5,402707

Aiken

59,210920

Allendale

2,843794

Anderson

64,455747

Bamberg

3,772636

Barnwell

5,119640

Beaufort

63,644719

Berkeley

49,632924

Calhoun

4,538794

Charleston

244,703902

Cherokee

19,792682

Chester

8,589814

Chesterfield

14,730715

Clarendon

6,819556

Colleton

10,506625

Darlington

20,071815

Dillon

8,627596

Dorchester

34,448695

Edgefield

5,220733

Fairfield

6,5281,191

Florence

62,738725

Georgetown

23,151773

Greenville

266,107877

Greenwood

27,697824

Hampton

4,609712

Horry

127,800633

Jasper

8,954700

Kershaw

17,400732

Lancaster

23,846879

Laurens

22,404767

Lee

3,464709

Lexington

118,454778

McCormick

1,745669

Marion

6,437626

Marlboro

6,779793

Newberry

13,692691

Oconee

23,470844

Orangeburg

28,668711

Pickens

35,648761

Richland

218,058893

Saluda

4,586608

Spartanburg

138,409856

Sumter

36,809712

Union

7,682666

Williamsburg

9,182694

York

93,724825

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 2017
StateEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
September 2017 (thousands)Percent change, September 2016-17Average weekly wageNational ranking by levelPercent change, third quarter 2016-17National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

144,464.41.0$1,021---0.6--

Alabama

1,941.10.885937-1.338

Alaska

335.4-0.71,02515-2.850

Arizona

2,760.12.494824-0.210

Arkansas

1,213.00.678849-0.619

California

17,153.41.71,21540.54

Colorado

2,625.91.91,06790.54

Connecticut

1,676.30.11,1796-2.247

Delaware

443.00.41,026140.46

District of Columbia

764.70.71,75911.32

Florida

8,305.8-0.289629-1.131

Georgia

4,343.51.396121-0.927

Hawaii

652.50.495322-0.313

Idaho

722.32.777850-0.516

Illinois

5,969.60.51,05710-0.313

Indiana

3,044.00.686136-0.619

Iowa

1,546.1-0.285538-2.247

Kansas

1,376.4-0.183941-2.146

Kentucky

1,890.40.583742-2.449

Louisiana

1,904.3-0.186933-1.742

Maine

621.90.782146-0.516

Maryland

2,661.80.51,1058-1.742

Massachusetts

3,568.00.91,2652-0.927

Michigan

4,334.30.996420-1.131

Minnesota

2,883.01.11,03013-2.045

Mississippi

1,129.1-0.172951-1.439

Missouri

2,805.80.987831-1.234

Montana

468.60.9793480.18

Nebraska

973.3-0.285039-0.823

Nevada

1,337.72.991426-3.851

New Hampshire

659.10.61,02216-0.415

New Jersey

4,043.61.11,1567-1.541

New Mexico

816.00.382345-0.823

New York

9,329.81.21,2193-0.210

North Carolina

4,348.01.390427-0.721

North Dakota

419.2-1.095322-1.234

Ohio

5,383.60.692025-0.823

Oklahoma

1,593.30.784340-1.234

Oregon

1,905.31.896919-0.19

Pennsylvania

5,836.51.01,00217-1.131

Rhode Island

484.50.897318-1.844

South Carolina

2,027.20.882843-0.516

South Dakota

426.20.480347-0.721

Tennessee

2,953.31.190328-1.234

Texas

12,008.91.41,03212-1.029

Utah

1,444.12.687930-0.210

Vermont

310.30.186933-1.439

Virginia

3,843.61.01,05311-0.823

Washington

3,343.42.01,20851.71

West Virginia

694.00.2826441.13

Wisconsin

2,866.90.587632-1.029

Wyoming

276.20.3868350.37

Puerto Rico

862.8-3.1509(3)-2.7(3)

Virgin Islands

36.9-1.1763(3)-1.9(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 21, 2018