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14-1403-CHI
August 13, 2014

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County Employment and Wages in Michigan – Fourth Quarter 2013

Nine of the 10 large counties in Michigan reported employment gains from December 2012 to December 2013, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported today. (Large counties are those with 2012 annual average employment levels of 75,000 or more.) Regional Commissioner Charlene Peiffer noted that Kent County had the largest increase, up 4.3 percent, followed by the counties of Ottawa (3.1 percent) and Macomb (2.7 percent). (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment advanced 1.8 percent from December 2012 to December 2013 as 292 of the 334 largest U.S. counties registered increases. Weld, Colo., recorded the largest percentage increase in the country, up 6.0 percent over the year. St. Clair, Ill., registered the largest percentage employment decline, down 3.1 percent.

Among the 10 largest counties in Michigan, employment was highest in Oakland County (690,700) and Wayne County (690,600) in December 2013. Two other counties, Kent (359,600) and Macomb (304,800) had employment levels of more than 300,000. Together, the 10 largest Michigan counties accounted for 69.8 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 334 largest counties made up 71.7 percent of total U.S. employment.

From the fourth quarter of 2012 to the fourth quarter of 2013, Ottawa County recorded the fastest rate of increase in average weekly wages among the 10 large counties in Michigan, registering a gain of 4.1 percent. (See table 1.) Oakland County recorded the highest average weekly wage among these large counties at $1,115 per week followed by Wayne County at $1,085. Nationally, the average weekly wage was unchanged from a year ago, remaining at $1,000 in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 73 counties in Michigan with employment levels below 75,000. With the exception of Midland County ($1,034) wage levels in all of these smaller counties were below the national average in the fourth quarter of 2013. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

Ottawa County’s 4.1-percent rise in average weekly wages from the fourth quarter of 2012 to the fourth quarter of 2013 ranked 11th among the nation’s largest counties. (See table 1.) Advancing at a slower pace, wages in Saginaw increased 2.0 percent over the year, ranking 47th. In contrast, Oakland County recorded a wage decrease of 2.5 percent.

Nationally, 185 of the 334 largest counties registered over-the-year wage increases. Santa Cruz, Calif., had the largest wage gain, up 6.5 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012. Ada, Idaho, was second with a wage increase of 6.4 percent, followed by the counties of Washington, Ore. (5.9 percent), and Union, N.J. (5.2 percent).

Among the large U.S. counties, 140 experienced over-the-year wage decreases. Douglas, Colo., had the largest wage decrease with a loss of 29.7 percent. San Mateo, Calif., had the second largest decrease in average weekly wages, down 15.8 percent from the fourth quarter 2012, followed by Virginia Beach City, Va. (-10.0 percent), McHenry, Ill. (-8.8 percent), and Shawnee, Kan. (-5.1 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

As noted, Oakland County ($1,115) had the highest average weekly wage in the state and ranked 54th among the 334 largest counties in the United States. Wayne ($1,085, 61st), Washtenaw ($1,030, 79th), and Macomb ($1,010, 91st) Counties also reported average weekly wages above the national average of $1,000. Saginaw ($804) reported the lowest average weekly wage among the state’s large counties and ranked 276th nationwide.

Nationally, 98 large counties registered average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,000 in the fourth quarter of 2013. San Mateo, Calif., held the top position among the highest-paid large counties with an average weekly wage of $2,724. New York, N.Y., was second at $2,041, followed by Santa Clara, Calif. ($1,972).

Seventy percent of the largest U.S. counties (235) reported weekly wages below the national average. Horry County, S.C., reported the lowest wage ($587), followed by the Texas counties of Cameron ($598) and Hidalgo ($620). Wages in these lowest-ranked counties were less than a quarter of the average weekly wage reported for the highest-ranked county, San Mateo.

Average weekly wages in Michigan's smaller counties

With the exception of Midland County ($1,034), all 73 counties in Michigan with employment below 75,000 had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,000. Among these smaller counties, Kalkaska had the second highest average weekly wage at $931, while Keweenaw had the lowest at $395. (See table 2.)

When all 83 counties in Michigan were considered, all but 5 had wages below the national average. Three reported average weekly wages under $550, 13 had wages from $550 to $649, 36 reported wages from $650 to $749, 18 had wages from $750 to $849, and 13 had wages of $850 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 2012 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 2013 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2012 are now available online at www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn12.htm. The 2013 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available later in September 2014.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; Federal Relay Service: 1-800-877-8339.


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 9.3 million employer reports cover 136.1 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 www.bls.gov/cew/;however, data in QCEW press releases have been revised (see Technical Note below) 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.

Table 1. Covered employment and wages in the United States and the 10 largest counties in Michigan, fourth quarter 2013
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
December 2013 (thousands) Percent change, December 2012-13 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, fourth quarter 2012-13 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

136,129.4 1.8 -- 1000 -- 0.0 --

Michigan

4,072.4 2.0 -- 952 20 -0.2 35

Genesee, Mich.

133.2 0.2 279 817 263 0.4 150

Ingham, Mich.

152.6 0.9 218 935 151 0.2 165

Kalamazoo, Mich.

112.3 0.9 218 908 166 1.2 91

Kent, Mich.

359.6 4.3 17 880 192 0.0 186

Macomb, Mich.

304.8 2.7 81 1010 91 0.7 128

Oakland, Mich.

690.7 1.9 130 1115 54 -2.5 315

Ottawa, Mich.

111.3 3.1 59 867 210 4.1 11

Saginaw, Mich.

85.3 1.3 175 804 276 2.0 47

Washtenaw, Mich.

200.8 1.0 207 1030 79 -0.2 205

Wayne, Mich.

690.6 -0.2 300 1085 61 0.0 186

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: Covered employment and wages includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs. Data are preliminary.
 

Table 2. Covered (1) employment and wages in the United States and all counties in Michigan, fourth quarter 2013 (2)
Area Employment December 2013 Average weekly wage (3)

United States (4)

136,129,407 $1,000

Michigan

4,072,425 952

Alcona

1,586 635

Alger

2,292 737

Allegan

35,899 893

Alpena

11,064 723

Antrim

4,696 609

Arenac

4,412 601

Baraga

3,502 664

Barry

11,319 739

Bay

35,588 766

Benzie

3,843 588

Berrien

59,221 823

Branch

12,731 730

Calhoun

56,075 921

Cass

8,640 704

Charlevoix

9,398 801

Cheboygan

5,669 593

Chippewa

12,711 680

Clare

6,639 701

Clinton

15,372 792

Crawford

3,642 723

Delta

13,504 696

Dickinson

13,577 830

Eaton

35,237 838

Emmet

17,404 717

Genesee

133,230 817

Gladwin

3,998 656

Gogebic

5,557 654

Grand Traverse

46,100 810

Gratiot

12,672 795

Hillsdale

12,160 796

Houghton

11,629 748

Huron

11,004 716

Ingham

152,570 935

Ionia

19,332 653

Iosco

7,035 620

Iron

3,615 674

Isabella

29,537 682

Jackson

57,024 859

Kalamazoo

112,267 908

Kalkaska

3,638 931

Kent

359,573 880

Keweenaw

344 395

Lake

1,357 644

Lapeer

20,438 666

Leelanau

5,833 651

Lenawee

27,614 731

Livingston

53,369 802

Luce

1,789 724

Mackinac

3,157 692

Macomb

304,794 1,010

Manistee

6,655 689

Marquette

27,369 795

Mason

10,182 679

Mecosta

12,449 752

Menominee

7,173 630

Midland

36,153 1,034

Missaukee

3,102 619

Monroe

40,557 848

Montcalm

15,184 724

Montmorency

1,884 625

Muskegon

60,423 816

Newaygo

11,109 712

Oakland

690,732 1,115

Oceana

6,531 626

Ogemaw

5,979 555

Ontonagon

1,393 537

Osceola

5,136 799

Oscoda

1,569 555

Otsego

9,489 698

Ottawa

111,326 867

Presque Isle

2,993 677

Roscommon

5,192 544

Saginaw

85,295 804

St. Clair

43,934 800

St. Joseph

22,068 730

Sanilac

11,148 713

Schoolcraft

2,766 707

Shiawassee

16,096 663

Tuscola

11,637 749

Van Buren

19,895 734

Washtenaw

200,774 1,030

Wayne

690,569 1,085

Wexford

13,331 712

Footnotes
(1) Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.
(2) Data are preliminary.
(3) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(4) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.
 

 

Table 3. Covered employment and wages by state, fourth quarter 2013
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
December
2013
(thousands)
Percent change,
December
2012-13
Average
weekly
wage
National
ranking by
level
Percent change,
fourth quarter
2012-13
National
ranking by
percent change

United States (2)

136,129.4 1.8 $1,000 -- 0.0 --

Alabama

1,866.5 1.0 851 34 -0.5 39

Alaska

315.1 0.0 1,022 14 1.6 7

Arizona

2,571.0 2.4 906 23 -0.5 39

Arkansas

1,154.3 -0.5 771 47 0.4 22

California

15,650.3 2.8 1,175 6 -0.9 43

Colorado

2,383.9 3.1 1,023 13 -0.9 43

Connecticut

1,661.2 0.3 1,238 4 -1.3 49

Delaware

419.6 1.8 1,035 9 -0.6 41

District of Columbia

727.3 0.6 1,638 1 -3.9 51

Florida

7,739.5 2.7 883 29 0.2 27

Georgia

3,986.9 2.5 924 21 -0.1 32

Hawaii

632.9 1.7 871 30 0.3 25

Idaho

634.5 2.6 754 50 3.0 2

Illinois

5,758.9 1.0 1,060 8 0.2 27

Indiana

2,896.9 1.6 814 40 -0.2 35

Iowa

1,510.9 1.4 834 38 1.6 7

Kansas

1,359.5 1.6 832 39 -0.4 38

Kentucky

1,818.0 1.2 804 42 0.2 27

Louisiana

1,911.6 0.9 889 26 0.5 20

Maine

586.8 0.8 786 46 1.7 5

Maryland

2,555.1 0.4 1,076 7 -0.9 43

Massachusetts

3,332.9 1.5 1,258 3 0.8 17

Michigan

4,072.4 2.0 952 20 -0.2 35

Minnesota

2,720.6 1.7 988 16 0.3 25

Mississippi

1,108.1 1.1 729 51 1.3 11

Missouri

2,670.4 1.1 861 32 -0.2 35

Montana

440.0 1.3 760 48 0.4 22

Nebraska

944.3 1.4 796 43 -0.1 32

Nevada

1,180.5 3.0 884 28 0.7 18

New Hampshire

629.3 1.4 1,017 15 -0.8 42

New Jersey

3,887.5 1.2 1,186 5 1.1 14

New Mexico

796.2 -0.1 814 40 1.4 10

New York

8,888.6 1.7 1,266 2 -1.1 48

North Carolina

4,045.5 1.9 860 33 0.7 18

North Dakota

435.0 3.3 980 17 3.8 1

Ohio

5,175.4 1.4 887 27 0.0 30

Oklahoma

1,581.3 0.6 851 34 -0.1 32

Oregon

1,699.6 2.5 894 25 2.6 3

Pennsylvania

5,650.3 0.4 976 18 0.4 22

Rhode Island

462.7 1.4 960 19 1.5 9

South Carolina

1,875.8 2.3 793 44 1.0 15

South Dakota

407.1 1.3 759 49 1.3 11

Tennessee

2,758.3 1.8 895 24 -0.9 43

Texas

11,246.3 2.6 1,027 12 0.0 30

Utah

1,284.7 3.1 836 37 -0.9 43

Vermont

308.5 0.6 848 36 2.3 4

Virginia

3,670.0 0.1 1,028 11 -1.3 49

Washington

2,976.0 2.5 1,034 10 1.7 5

West Virginia

710.1 -0.6 792 45 0.5 20

Wisconsin

2,751.8 1.0 865 31 1.2 13

Wyoming

279.2 0.6 917 22 1.0 15

Puerto Rico

958.3 -2.3 551 (3) 0.2 (3)

Virgin Islands

38.5 -3.6 754 (3) 2.4 (3)

(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: Covered employment and wages includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs. Data are preliminary.
 

 Chart 1. Average weekly wages by county in Michigan, fourth quarter 2013

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, August 13, 2014