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17-1630-ATL
Wednesday, December 20, 2017

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County Employment and Wages in Alabama – Second Quarter 2017

Employment increased in 5 of Alabama’s 6 largest counties from June 2016 to June 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are defined as those with employment of 75,000 or more as measured by 2016 annual average employment.) Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that employment increases ranged from 2.7 percent in Madison County to 0.6 percent in Shelby County. Employment in Mobile County declined 0.1 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment rose 1.7 percent from June 2016 to June 2017 as 318 of the 346 largest U.S. counties gained jobs. Midland, Texas, had the largest percentage increase, up 7.3 percent over the year. Lucas, Ohio, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment with a loss of 1.9 percent.

Among the six largest counties in Alabama, employment was highest in Jefferson (345,100) in June 2017, while Shelby had the smallest employment (85,200). Together, Alabama’s large counties accounted for 52.5 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 145.2 million in June 2017.

Each of Alabama’s six large counties had over-the-year wage increases with the largest gain in Tuscaloosa County (4.8 percent). Madison County had the highest average weekly wage among the state’s six largest counties at $1,072. Nationally, the average weekly wage was $1,020, a 3.2 percent increase from a year ago. (See table 1.)

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 61 counties in Alabama with employment below 75,000. Average weekly wages in these counties ranged from $1,119 to $602. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

As noted, average weekly wages increased in all of Alabama’s large counties from the second quarter of 2016 to the second quarter of 2017. Tuscaloosa (4.8 percent, 48th) and Jefferson (4.3 percent, 71st) were in the top third of the national ranking. Average weekly wage growth in Alabama’s four other large counties ranged from 2.6 to 0.2 percent. (See table 1.)

Nationally, 325 of the 346 largest counties had over-the-year increases in average weekly wages. New Hanover, N.C., had the largest wage increase among the largest U.S. counties (11.9 percent). San Mateo, Calif., and Midland, Texas were second with wage increases of 11.4 percent each. Rounding out the top five were Kitsap, Wash. (11.0 percent) and Clackamas, Ore. (10.0 percent).

Of the 346 largest U.S. counties, 19 had over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. McLean, Ill., had the largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages (-20.4 percent), followed by Union, N.J. (-3.7 percent); Warren, Ohio (-3.6 percent); Somerset, N.J. (-3.4 percent); Fairfield, Conn. (-1.9 percent); and Washington, Ore. (-1.9 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Average weekly wages in 3 of Alabama’s 6 largest counties placed in the top half of the national ranking among the 346 largest counties in the second quarter of 2017. Madison County’s average weekly wage of $1,072 was above the U.S. average of $1,020, and ranked 73rd nationwide. Jefferson County ($1,008) and Shelby County ($948) ranked 108th and 163rd, respectively.

Nationwide, average weekly wages were higher than the U.S. average in 97 of the 346 largest counties. Santa Clara, Calif., was the highest-paid large county with an average weekly wage of $2,392. San Mateo, Calif., was second with an average weekly wage of $2,093, followed by San Francisco, Calif. ($1,941) and New York, N.Y. ($1,907).

Among the largest U.S. counties, 249 reported average weekly wages below the national average in the second quarter of 2017. Cameron, Texas ($615) had the lowest weekly wage, followed by Horry, S.C. ($622); and the Texas counties of Hidalgo ($632) and Webb ($667).

Average weekly wages in Alabama’s smaller counties

Among the 61 counties in Alabama with employment below 75,000, Washington ($1,119) was the only county with a weekly wage above the national average of $1,020. Perry County had the lowest weekly wage in the state, averaging $602 in the second quarter of 2017. (See table 2.)

When all 67 counties in Alabama were considered, 37 had average weekly wages below $699, 14 had wages from $700-$799, 11 had wages from $800-$899, 5 had wages $900 or above. (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 https://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 third quarter 2017 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, March 8, 2018.


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 145.2 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 6 largest counties in Alabama, second quarter 2017
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
June 2017 (thousands) Percent change, June 2016-17 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, second quarter 2016-17 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

145,186.4 1.7 -- $1,020 -- 3.2 --

Alabama

1,946.4 1.2 -- 858 38 2.8 31

Jefferson, Ala.

345.1 1.2 212 1,008 108 4.3 71

Madison, Ala.

197.0 2.7 70 1,072 73 2.3 220

Mobile, Ala.

170.3 -0.1 324 857 255 1.4 273

Montgomery, Ala.

133.2 1.1 222 840 272 0.2 322

Shelby, Ala.

85.2 0.6 274 948 163 2.6 196

Tuscaloosa, Ala.

91.7 0.7 264 850 263 4.8 48

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 Alabama, second quarter 2017
Area Employment June 2017 Average Weekly Wage(1)

United States(2)

145,186,369 $1,020

Alabama

1,946,409 858

Autauga

10,975 687

Baldwin

74,905 666

Barbour

8,029 683

Bibb

4,155 757

Blount

8,388 649

Bullock

2,987 634

Butler

6,815 635

Calhoun

44,252 733

Chambers

8,310 693

Cherokee

5,084 643

Chilton

9,415 683

Choctaw

3,460 864

Clarke

8,144 721

Clay

4,041 632

Cleburne

2,161 825

Coffee

15,859 637

Colbert

23,938 826

Conecuh

3,454 676

Coosa

1,345 639

Covington

12,580 668

Crenshaw

3,764 680

Cullman

28,990 715

Dale

16,849 970

Dallas

12,389 678

DeKalb

21,073 671

Elmore

20,138 646

Escambia

12,967 729

Etowah

36,544 686

Fayette

4,086 648

Franklin

10,637 665

Geneva

4,936 615

Greene

1,762 683

Hale

2,732 676

Henry

3,252 696

Houston

47,778 754

Jackson

15,860 673

Jefferson

345,146 1,008

Lamar

3,495 707

Lauderdale

29,577 648

Lawrence

4,794 631

Lee

58,252 728

Limestone

22,843 896

Lowndes

2,322 862

Macon

4,750 801

Madison

197,040 1,072

Marengo

7,169 720

Marion

9,986 655

Marshall

37,021 667

Mobile

170,288 857

Monroe

6,194 782

Montgomery

133,212 840

Morgan

48,026 831

Perry

2,055 602

Pickens

3,837 692

Pike

14,314 762

Randolph

4,837 622

Russell

14,138 681

St. Clair

19,856 692

Shelby

85,247 948

Sumter

2,996 745

Talladega

29,325 861

Tallapoosa

13,585 700

Tuscaloosa

91,715 850

Walker

18,228 687

Washington

3,568 1,119

Wilcox

2,881 783

Winston

7,837 662

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, second quarter 2017
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
June 2017 (thousands) Percent change, June 2016-17 Average weekly wage National ranking by level Percent change, second quarter 2016-17 National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

145,186.4 1.7 $1,020 -- 3.2 --

Alabama

1,946.4 1.2 858 38 2.8 31

Alaska

338.4 -0.7 1,005 16 -0.5 51

Arizona

2,699.6 2.9 943 23 2.5 35

Arkansas

1,206.0 0.7 810 47 3.2 22

California

17,150.9 2.2 1,210 5 4.7 3

Colorado

2,638.8 2.5 1,042 11 4.2 5

Connecticut

1,701.2 0.6 1,216 4 0.4 50

Delaware

446.6 0.6 1,012 15 2.2 43

District of Columbia

766.5 1.0 1,675 1 3.3 19

Florida

8,390.6 2.8 905 27 2.5 35

Georgia

4,357.8 2.1 956 21 2.9 27

Hawaii

653.0 1.0 935 24 3.5 13

Idaho

723.5 3.4 765 50 3.4 16

Illinois

6,006.6 0.9 1,062 9 2.4 39

Indiana

3,041.0 1.5 859 37 3.7 9

Iowa

1,571.4 0.4 853 39 3.3 19

Kansas

1,377.8 -0.1 849 40 2.4 39

Kentucky

1,889.4 0.8 862 35 2.9 27

Louisiana

1,907.7 0.0 869 34 2.0 46

Maine

629.1 0.9 814 46 2.5 35

Maryland

2,694.8 1.4 1,103 8 3.1 23

Massachusetts

3,604.5 1.6 1,278 2 3.6 11

Michigan

4,365.3 1.6 969 19 2.9 27

Minnesota

2,902.1 2.0 1,037 12 3.9 6

Mississippi

1,128.9 0.7 732 51 0.8 49

Missouri

2,818.7 1.2 889 30 3.0 25

Montana

473.6 1.3 797 48 3.9 6

Nebraska

984.0 0.4 833 43 3.5 13

Nevada

1,333.5 3.4 900 29 2.9 27

New Hampshire

665.4 1.6 1,015 14 1.2 48

New Jersey

4,123.5 1.8 1,173 6 2.3 41

New Mexico

815.4 0.7 823 45 1.5 47

New York

9,417.4 1.6 1,237 3 2.2 43

North Carolina

4,361.4 1.8 902 28 4.3 4

North Dakota

422.7 -0.2 953 22 5.0 2

Ohio

5,422.8 1.2 912 25 3.3 19

Oklahoma

1,583.8 0.8 845 41 2.5 35

Oregon

1,912.6 2.2 967 20 3.8 8

Pennsylvania

5,859.4 1.3 1,000 17 3.0 25

Rhode Island

487.3 1.0 980 18 2.6 33

South Carolina

2,053.9 2.0 834 42 3.6 11

South Dakota

435.5 0.6 785 49 3.4 16

Tennessee

2,948.1 1.8 906 26 3.5 13

Texas

12,059.6 2.1 1,027 13 2.7 32

Utah

1,440.3 3.4 862 35 2.6 33

Vermont

314.2 1.0 870 33 2.1 45

Virginia

3,886.6 1.5 1,047 10 3.7 9

Washington

3,352.5 2.2 1,141 7 5.6 1

West Virginia

690.9 -0.3 828 44 3.4 16

Wisconsin

2,905.3 1.1 876 31 2.3 41

Wyoming

280.2 -0.7 875 32 3.1 23

Puerto Rico

873.6 -1.0 515 (3) 1.2 (3)

Virgin Islands

38.6 0.4 762 (3) 2.6 (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, December 20, 2017