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16-1917-ATL
Friday, September 23, 2016

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County Employment and Wages in Tennessee – First Quarter 2016

Employment rose in each of the six large counties in Tennessee from March 2015 to March 2016, 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 2015 annual average employment.) Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that Williamson County had the largest employment gain in the country, up 7.9 percent over the previous year. Employment gains in Tennessee’s remaining large counties ranged from 5.5 percent in Rutherford County to 1.6 percent in Shelby County. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment advanced 2.0 percent from March 2015 to March 2016 as 318 of the 344 largest U.S. counties had increases. As noted, Williamson, Tenn., had the largest percentage increase with a gain of 7.9 percent. Midland, Texas, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment among the largest U.S. counties, with a loss of 9.0 percent.

Among the largest counties in Tennessee, employment was highest in Shelby (487,200) in March 2016, followed by Davidson (462,000). Together, Tennessee’s six large counties accounted for 56.5 percent of total employment within the state. Nationwide, the 344 largest counties made up 72.6 percent of total U.S. employment.

Of Tennessee’s six large counties, three had average weekly wage gains from the first quarter of 2015 to the first quarter of 2016—Knox (2.0 percent); Davidson (1.8 percent); and Hamilton (0.8 percent). Williamson County had the highest average weekly wage among the state’s largest counties at $1,198. Nationally, the average weekly wage decreased 0.5 percent over the year to $1,043 in the first quarter of 2016. (See table 1.)

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 89 counties with employment levels below 75,000 in Tennessee. Average weekly wages in these counties ranged from $1,146 to $465. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

As noted, average weekly wages rose in three of Tennessee’s large counties from the first quarter of 2015 to the first quarter of 2016. Knox’s 2.0-percent wage increase ranked 38th among the nation’s 344 largest counties while Davidson’s 1.8-percent gain ranked 47th and Hamilton’s 0.8-percent growth ranked 108th. (See table 1.) Wages declined in Tennessee’s three other large counties over the previous year. Williamson (-4.9 percent) had the highest rate of wage decrease and ranked 330th in the nation, followed by Shelby (-1.7 percent, 254th) and Rutherford (-1.1 percent, 224th).

Of the 344 largest counties, 167 had over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. McLean, Ill., had the largest percentage wage decrease nationwide (-13.3 percent). Washington, Pa., was second with a wage decrease of 12.0 percent, followed by the counties of Lafayette, La. (-10.3percent); Mercer, N.J. (-8.5 percent); and Williamson, Texas (-7.8 percent).

Nationally, 164 large U.S. counties had over-the-year increases in average weekly wages. Clayton, Ga., had the largest percentage increase in average weekly wages (15.5 percent), followed by King, Wash. (5.1 percent); San Mateo, Calif. (4.8 percent); Ventura, Calif. (4.4 percent); and Merrimack, N.H. (4.3 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Average weekly wages in 3 of Tennessee’s 6 largest counties placed in the top half of the national ranking among the 344 largest counties in the first quarter of 2016. Williamson and Davidson Counties had average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,043 and ranked in the top 100 nationwide at 49th and 71st, respectively. Shelby County ($991), ranked 125th. Average weekly wages in the remaining three large counties placed in the bottom half of the national ranking.

Nationwide, 91 large counties registered average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,043 in the first quarter of 2016. New York, N.Y., recorded the highest average weekly wage at $2,783, followed by Santa Clara, Calif., at $2,210. Rounding out the top five were San Mateo, Calif. ($2,195); San Francisco, Calif. ($2,054); and Somerset, N.J. ($2,022).

Among the largest U.S. counties, 253 had average weekly wages below the national average in the first quarter of 2016. Horry, S.C. ($587), had the lowest wage, followed by the counties of Cameron, Texas ($592); Hidalgo, Texas ($614); Webb, Texas ($650); and Lake, Fl. ($653).

Average weekly wages in Tennessee’s smaller counties

Among the 89 counties in Tennessee with employment below 75,000, only Roane County ($1,146) had an average weekly wage above the national average of $1,043. Hancock County reported the lowest average weekly in the state, averaging $465 in the first quarter of 2016. (See table 2.)

When all 95 counties in Tennessee were considered, 28 reported average weekly wages under $600, 35 had wages from $600 to $699, 18 had wages from $700 to $799, and 14 had wages above $800. (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 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 http://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 2016 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, December 7, 2016.


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 6 largest counties in Tennessee, first quarter 2016
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
March 2016 (thousands) Percent change, March 2015-16 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, first quarter 2015-16 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

140,070.8 2.0 -- $1,043 -- -0.5 --

Tennessee

2,859.2 3.3 -- 887 27 0.3 16

Davidson, Tenn.

462.0 3.9 31 1,097 71 1.8 47

Hamilton, Tenn.

194.7 2.8 99 882 198 0.8 108

Knox, Tenn.

233.4 2.6 116 875 205 2.0 38

Rutherford, Tenn.

117.8 5.5 4 848 235 -1.1 224

Shelby, Tenn.

487.2 1.6 211 991 125 -1.7 254

Williamson, Tenn.

121.3 7.9 1 1,198 49 -4.9 330

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 Tennessee, 1st quarter 2016
Area Employment March 2016 Average weekly wage (1)

United States (2)

140,070,814 $1,043

Tennessee

2,859,161 887

Anderson

38,930 999

Bedford

18,384 688

Benton

4,096 558

Bledsoe

2,186 578

Blount

46,681 857

Bradley

41,760 725

Campbell

8,819 604

Cannon

2,056 569

Carroll

7,363 613

Carter

10,904 585

Cheatham

7,836 799

Chester

3,820 590

Claiborne

8,911 610

Clay

1,570 567

Cocke

7,566 596

Coffee

25,325 761

Crockett

3,549 743

Cumberland

17,420 591

Davidson

462,026 1,097

Decatur

3,556 651

De Kalb

5,303 632

Dickson

16,540 670

Dyer

15,292 675

Fayette

7,788 781

Fentress

4,771 546

Franklin

12,110 625

Gibson

13,774 629

Giles

10,756 683

Grainger

3,711 602

Greene

25,581 693

Grundy

2,008 475

Hamblen

30,656 679

Hamilton

194,732 882

Hancock

860 465

Hardeman

6,611 720

Hardin

7,867 753

Hawkins

12,600 689

Haywood

4,904 697

Henderson

7,772 656

Henry

11,226 660

Hickman

3,753 635

Houston

1,475 526

Humphreys

5,722 858

Jackson

1,448 587

Jefferson

13,092 689

Johnson

4,186 706

Knox

233,369 875

Lake

1,796 564

Lauderdale

5,979 642

Lawrence

10,272 602

Lewis

2,585 523

Lincoln

9,548 651

Loudon

14,975 724

McMinn

17,730 748

McNairy

5,971 581

Macon

4,655 575

Madison

57,178 746

Marion

7,478 660

Marshall

8,674 686

Maury

31,330 827

Meigs

1,913 627

Monroe

13,665 726

Montgomery

51,599 652

Moore

1,980 763

Morgan

2,904 586

Obion

9,662 642

Overton

4,560 646

Perry

1,986 531

Pickett

1,057 568

Polk

2,160 664

Putnam

34,874 674

Rhea

10,765 794

Roane

18,313 1,146

Robertson

21,787 681

Rutherford

117,779 848

Scott

5,453 545

Sequatchie

2,889 549

Sevier

43,433 523

Shelby

487,150 991

Smith

4,781 705

Stewart

2,626 820

Sullivan

68,410 881

Sumner

51,153 725

Tipton

10,970 659

Trousdale

1,534 589

Unicoi

4,850 833

Union

2,357 559

Van Buren

788 571

Warren

14,040 663

Washington

60,764 715

Wayne

3,609 566

Weakley

10,996 587

White

6,830 618

Williamson

121,298 1,198

Wilson

39,395 741

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 2016
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
March 2016 (thousands) Percent change, March 2015-16 Average weekly wage National ranking by level Percent change, first quarter 2015-16 National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

140,070.8 2.0 1043 -- -0.5 --

Alabama

1,902.6 1.6 842 37 -0.2 22

Alaska

317.6 -1.4 1028 15 -2 43

Arizona

2,679.8 2.8 918 23 -0.8 30

Arkansas

1,191.1 2.1 793 45 0.5 13

California

16,455.5 2.6 1206 6 0 20

Colorado

2,514.6 2.4 1057 13 -1.3 36

Connecticut

1,650.6 0.6 1362 3 -1.4 38

Delaware

429.7 1.5 1072 10 -3 48

District of Columbia

749.6 2.0 1766 1 0.4 14

Florida

8,301.8 3.5 887 27 0.2 18

Georgia

4,215.1 3.0 1008 17 1.9 2

Hawaii

645.1 1.4 896 26 1.7 3

Idaho

670.4 3.5 725 50 -1.5 39

Illinois

5,800.6 1.2 1126 7 -0.5 28

Indiana

2,949.5 1.9 853 33 -0.5 28

Iowa

1,518.2 0.9 844 36 -0.4 27

Kansas

1,362.3 0.4 833 38 -2 43

Kentucky

1,843.9 1.9 823 41 0.1 19

Louisiana

1,910.5 -0.8 860 32 -2.6 47

Maine

580.5 1.8 804 44 1.1 8

Maryland

2,591.7 1.9 1103 9 -0.8 30

Massachusetts

3,414.8 2.1 1327 4 -1 33

Michigan

4,163.7 2.1 976 20 0.7 11

Minnesota

2,750.1 1.5 1065 12 -1.2 34

Mississippi

1,121.0 1.7 713 51 0.4 14

Missouri

2,729.5 1.9 879 29 -0.3 25

Montana

447.8 1.8 751 49 0.3 16

Nebraska

956.6 1.4 817 42 0 20

Nevada

1,264.1 3.0 875 30 1.2 5

New Hampshire

635.1 1.9 998 18 1.6 4

New Jersey

3,909.7 2.4 1268 5 -1.7 41

New Mexico

800.4 0.0 792 46 -1.6 40

New York

9,042.2 2.0 1456 2 -0.3 25

North Carolina

4,220.3 3.0 928 22 -0.2 22

North Dakota

409.4 -6.2 908 25 -7.6 51

Ohio

5,236.2 1.8 913 24 -0.8 30

Oklahoma

1,578.6 -0.9 833 38 -4.1 49

Oregon

1,808.2 3.2 929 21 1.2 5

Pennsylvania

5,662.2 1.1 1012 16 -1.9 42

Rhode Island

464.6 1.9 985 19 -2.2 46

South Carolina

1,974.6 2.7 806 43 0.8 10

South Dakota

410.5 0.9 771 48 1.2 5

Tennessee

2,859.2 3.3 887 27 0.3 16

Texas

11,638.7 0.7 1066 11 -2.1 45

Utah

1,369.2 3.8 849 35 0.6 12

Vermont

304.6 0.1 832 40 1 9

Virginia

3,748.1 2.6 1057 13 -1.2 34

Washington

3,147.7 3.1 1121 8 3 1

West Virginia

683.9 -1.2 782 47 -1.3 36

Wisconsin

2,771.4 1.3 875 30 -0.2 22

Wyoming

267.9 -3.7 850 34 -4.7 50

Puerto Rico

895.2 -1.2 520 (3) -0.4 (3)

Virgin Islands

38.6 0.4 769 (3) 2.9 (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: Friday, September 23, 2016