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News Release Information

15-2098-SAN
Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (415) 625-2270

County Employment and Wages in Hawaii – First Quarter 2015

Hawaii’s only large county, Honolulu, reported an employment increase of 1.1 percent from March 2014 to March 2015 the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are those with 2014 annual average employment levels of 75,000 or more.) Regional Commissioner Richard J. Holden noted that the rate of employment growth in Honolulu County was below the nationalincrease of 2.1 percent. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment increased in 323 of the 342 largest U.S. counties from March 2014 to March 2015. Utah County, Utah, had the largest percentage increase in employment at 6.7 percent. Atlantic, N.J., had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment with a loss of 4.3 percent.

Employment in Honolulu County stood at 461,900 in March 2015, accounting for 72.9 percent of total employment in Hawaii. Nationwide, the 342 largest counties made up 72.3 percent of total U.S. employment which stood at 137.4 million in March 2015.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the three counties in Hawaii with employment below 75,000. All three of these smaller counties had average weekly wages at least $250 below the national average. (See table 2 and chart 1.)

Large county wage changes

From the first quarter of 2014 to the first quarter of 2015, the average weekly wage in Honolulu County advanced 2.8 percent, above the national increase (2.1 percent), Honolulu’s percentage change in average weekly wages ranked 81st among the largest 342 U.S. counties. (See table 1.)

Nationally, 297 of the 342 largest counties had over-the-year increases in average weekly wages. Olmsted, Minn., had the largest percentage wage increase among the largest U.S. counties (11.7 percent). Washington, Pa., was second with a wage increase of 10.7 percent, followed by the counties of Riverside, Calif. (10.1 percent); Lake, Ill. (9.2 percent); and Orange, Calif. (9.1 percent).

Of the 342 largest U.S. counties, 39 experienced over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. Snohomish, Wash., had the largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages, with a loss of 4.8 percent. Chester, Pa., had the second largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages (-4.0 percent), followed by Williamson, Texas (-3.1 percent); Saginaw, Mich. (-2.4 percent); and Palm Beach, Fla. (-2.0 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Honolulu County had average weekly wages of $918 ranked near the middle (172nd) of the national ranking among the 342 largest counties. Nationally, the average weekly wage was $1,048 in the first quarter of 2015.

Nationwide, 93 large counties registered average weekly wage above the U.S. average in the first quarter of 2015. New York, N.Y., recorded the highest average weekly wage at $2,847, followed by Santa Clara, Calif., at $2,203. Rounding out the top five were Somerset, N.J. ($2,080); San Francisco, Calif. ($2,070); and San Mateo, Calif. ($2,066).

Seventy-three percent of the largest U.S. counties (248) reported weekly wages below the national average. Horry County, S.C., reported the lowest wage ($583), followed by the Texas counties of Cameron and Hidalgo ($593 and $607), Lake, Fla. ($649); and Yakima, Wash. ($658).

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 2014 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 2015 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2014 are now available online at https://www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn14.htm. The 2015 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2016.

The County Employment and Wages release for second quarter 2015 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, December 17, 2015.


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 9.5 million employer reports cover 137.4 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 largest county in Hawaii, first quarter 2015
AreaEmploymentAverage Weekly Wage (1)
March 2015 (thousands)Percent change, March 2014-15 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)Average weekly wageNational ranking by level (3)Percent change, first quarter 2014-15 (2)National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

137,412.42.1--$1,048--2.1--

Hawaii

633.71.3--881312.89

Honolulu, Hawaii

461.91.12439181722.881
 

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 Hawaii, first quarter 2015
AreaEmployment March 2015Average Weekly Wage (1)

United States (2)

137,412,381$1,048

Hawaii

633,676881

Hawaii

66,535763

Honolulu

461,909918

Kauai

30,317794

Maui + Kalawao

73,697788

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, first quarter 2015
StateEmploymentAverage weekly wage (1)
March 2015 (thousands)Percent change, March 2014-15Average weekly wageNational ranking by levelPercent change, first quarter 2014-15National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

137,412.42.1$1,048--2.1--

Alabama

1,873.51.3844392.219

Alaska

322.21.01,051152.610

Arizona

2,605.62.5926231.045

Arkansas

1,166.61.3790470.847

California

16,029.53.01,20763.73

Colorado

2,458.03.71,071132.416

Connecticut

1,640.50.81,38231.535

Delaware

422.82.51,1059-0.551

District of Columbia

732.61.41,76413.24

Florida

8,018.03.6885281.827

Georgia

4,107.03.5989181.731

Hawaii

633.71.3881312.89

Idaho

650.33.1736502.219

Illinois

5,724.61.21,13072.416

Indiana

2,894.81.8857351.438

Iowa

1,504.31.3848372.97

Kansas

1,357.11.0851361.438

Kentucky

1,810.31.5823411.535

Louisiana

1,927.11.0885282.021

Maine

571.40.9793450.946

Maryland

2,540.81.21,11382.512

Massachusetts

3,338.61.71,34143.24

Michigan

4,079.51.8969211.924

Minnesota

2,709.21.81,079124.31

Mississippi

1,102.30.6711510.748

Missouri

2,678.01.7882301.827

Montana

441.02.7750492.610

Nebraska

943.11.4818422.512

Nevada

1,227.73.786534-0.250

New Hampshire

623.51.5982201.243

New Jersey

3,834.61.41,28851.924

New Mexico

798.71.4805431.535

New York

8,865.01.91,46320.249

North Carolina

4,099.42.5930221.924

North Dakota

436.01.6984194.22

Ohio

5,144.51.4922241.438

Oklahoma

1,592.71.3869332.021

Oregon

1,748.73.5919252.97

Pennsylvania

5,606.90.91,031162.416

Rhode Island

456.11.41,008171.243

South Carolina

1,919.12.5801441.827

South Dakota

406.51.5763483.06

Tennessee

2,772.72.1886271.438

Texas

11,557.02.91,089102.512

Utah

1,318.83.7845381.731

Vermont

303.90.9824402.021

Virginia

3,649.31.11,068141.731

Washington

3,064.43.21,087111.827

West Virginia

692.4-0.3792461.438

Wisconsin

2,734.31.5877322.512

Wyoming

277.80.8892261.731

Puerto Rico

904.9-1.1524(3)1.0(3)

Virgin Islands

38.50.0738(3)-0.7(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, October 28, 2015