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15-2084-SAN
Tuesday, October 27, 2015

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County Employment and Wages in Idaho – First Quarter 2015

Idaho’s only large county, Ada, reported an employment increase of 2.1 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 Ada County matched the national increase 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, 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 Ada County stood at 212,700 in March 2015, accounting for nearly one third of total employment in Idaho. 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 43 counties in Idaho with employment below 75,000. All except one of these smaller counties had average weekly wages below the national average in the first quarter of 2015. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

From the first quarter of 2014 to the first quarter of 2015, the average weekly wage in Ada County advanced 2.0 percent, just below the national increase of 2.1 percent. Ada’s percentage change in average weekly wages ranked 142nd among the 342 largest 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

Ada County’s average weekly wage of $873 ranked in the bottom half among the 342 largest U.S. 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).

Average weekly wages in Idaho’s smaller counties

Among the 43 counties in Idaho with employment below 75,000, only Butte County ($1,463) had an average weekly wage above the national average of $1,048. Boise County reported the lowest average weekly wage in the state, averaging $382 in the first quarter of 2015. (See table 2.)

When all 44 counties in Idaho were considered, 3 reported average weekly wages under $500, 12 reported wages from $500 to $599, 17 had wages from $600 to $699, 6 had wages from $700 to $799, and 6 had wages at $800 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 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 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 Idaho, first quarter 2015
Area Employment Average Weekly Wage (1)
March 2015 (thousands) Percent change, March 2014-15 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, first quarter 2014-15 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

137,412.4 2.1 -- $1,048 -- 2.1 --

Idaho

650.3 3.1 -- 736 50 2.2 19

Ada, Idaho

212.7 2.1 155 873 209 2.0 142
 

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 Idaho, first quarter 2015
Area Employment March 2015 Average Weekly Wage (1)

United States (2)

137,412,381 $1,048

Idaho

650,302 736

Ada

212,706 873

Adams

924 598

Bannock

33,310 620

Bear Lake

1,566 511

Benewah

3,273 709

Bingham

14,044 621

Blaine

12,089 739

Boise

1,678 382

Bonner

12,423 619

Bonneville

49,964 714

Boundary

3,334 585

Butte

3,566 1,463

Camas

447 1,039

Canyon

57,592 630

Caribou

3,115 960

Cassia

10,265 607

Clark

389 834

Clearwater

2,690 652

Custer

1,195 745

Elmore

6,356 600

Franklin

3,167 489

Fremont

2,453 589

Gem

3,413 538

Gooding

5,762 649

Idaho

4,084 652

Jefferson

5,877 539

Jerome

9,757 636

Kootenai

53,738 674

Latah

13,174 680

Lemhi

2,145 566

Lewis

1,580 579

Lincoln

1,509 600

Madison

13,374 555

Minidoka

7,311 630

Nez Perce

20,561 746

Oneida

1,064 483

Owyhee

2,801 597

Payette

6,042 632

Power

3,218 732

Shoshone

4,464 842

Teton

2,633 570

Twin Falls

35,931 609

Valley

3,689 623

Washington

2,793 555

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
State Employment Average weekly wage (1)
March 2015 (thousands) Percent change, March 2014-15 Average weekly wage National ranking by level Percent change, first quarter 2014-15 National ranking by percent change

United States (2)

137,412.4 2.1 $1,048 -- 2.1 --

Alabama

1,873.5 1.3 844 39 2.2 19

Alaska

322.2 1.0 1,051 15 2.6 10

Arizona

2,605.6 2.5 926 23 1.0 45

Arkansas

1,166.6 1.3 790 47 0.8 47

California

16,029.5 3.0 1,207 6 3.7 3

Colorado

2,458.0 3.7 1,071 13 2.4 16

Connecticut

1,640.5 0.8 1,382 3 1.5 35

Delaware

422.8 2.5 1,105 9 -0.5 51

District of Columbia

732.6 1.4 1,764 1 3.2 4

Florida

8,018.0 3.6 885 28 1.8 27

Georgia

4,107.0 3.5 989 18 1.7 31

Hawaii

633.7 1.3 881 31 2.8 9

Idaho

650.3 3.1 736 50 2.2 19

Illinois

5,724.6 1.2 1,130 7 2.4 16

Indiana

2,894.8 1.8 857 35 1.4 38

Iowa

1,504.3 1.3 848 37 2.9 7

Kansas

1,357.1 1.0 851 36 1.4 38

Kentucky

1,810.3 1.5 823 41 1.5 35

Louisiana

1,927.1 1.0 885 28 2.0 21

Maine

571.4 0.9 793 45 0.9 46

Maryland

2,540.8 1.2 1,113 8 2.5 12

Massachusetts

3,338.6 1.7 1,341 4 3.2 4

Michigan

4,079.5 1.8 969 21 1.9 24

Minnesota

2,709.2 1.8 1,079 12 4.3 1

Mississippi

1,102.3 0.6 711 51 0.7 48

Missouri

2,678.0 1.7 882 30 1.8 27

Montana

441.0 2.7 750 49 2.6 10

Nebraska

943.1 1.4 818 42 2.5 12

Nevada

1,227.7 3.7 865 34 -0.2 50

New Hampshire

623.5 1.5 982 20 1.2 43

New Jersey

3,834.6 1.4 1,288 5 1.9 24

New Mexico

798.7 1.4 805 43 1.5 35

New York

8,865.0 1.9 1,463 2 0.2 49

North Carolina

4,099.4 2.5 930 22 1.9 24

North Dakota

436.0 1.6 984 19 4.2 2

Ohio

5,144.5 1.4 922 24 1.4 38

Oklahoma

1,592.7 1.3 869 33 2.0 21

Oregon

1,748.7 3.5 919 25 2.9 7

Pennsylvania

5,606.9 0.9 1,031 16 2.4 16

Rhode Island

456.1 1.4 1,008 17 1.2 43

South Carolina

1,919.1 2.5 801 44 1.8 27

South Dakota

406.5 1.5 763 48 3.0 6

Tennessee

2,772.7 2.1 886 27 1.4 38

Texas

11,557.0 2.9 1,089 10 2.5 12

Utah

1,318.8 3.7 845 38 1.7 31

Vermont

303.9 0.9 824 40 2.0 21

Virginia

3,649.3 1.1 1,068 14 1.7 31

Washington

3,064.4 3.2 1,087 11 1.8 27

West Virginia

692.4 -0.3 792 46 1.4 38

Wisconsin

2,734.3 1.5 877 32 2.5 12

Wyoming

277.8 0.8 892 26 1.7 31

Puerto Rico

904.9 -1.1 524 (3) 1.0 (3)

Virgin Islands

38.5 0.0 738 (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.
 

 Chart 1. Average weekly wages by county in Idaho, first quarter 2015

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, October 27, 2015