County Employment and Wages Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EST), Tuesday, December 5, 2017	USDL-17-1613

Technical Information:	(202) 691-6567  *  QCEWInfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/cew
Media Contact:		(202) 691-5902  *  PressOffice@bls.gov

COUNTY EMPLOYMENT AND WAGES
Second Quarter 2017

From June 2016 to June 2017, employment increased in 318 of the 346 largest U.S. counties, the U.S. 
Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Midland, Texas, had the largest percentage increase with a 
gain of 7.3 percent over the year, above the national job growth rate of 1.7 percent. Within Midland, the 
largest employment increase occurred in natural resources and mining, which gained 3,497 jobs over the 
year (19.6 percent). Lucas, Ohio, had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment 
among the largest counties in the U.S., with a loss of 1.9 percent. Within Lucas, construction had the 
largest decrease in employment, with a loss of 1,534 jobs (-14.2 percent). 

The U.S. average weekly wage increased 3.2 percent over the year, growing to $1,020 in the second 
quarter of 2017. New Hanover, N.C., had the largest over-the-year percentage increase in average 
weekly wages with a gain of 11.9 percent. Within New Hanover, an average weekly wage gain of $589 
(62.7 percent) in professional and business services made the largest contribution to the county’s 
increase in average weekly wages. McLean, Ill., had the largest over-the-year percentage decrease in 
average weekly wages with a loss of 20.4 percent. Within McLean, financial activities had the largest 
impact on the county’s average weekly wage change with a decrease of $953 (-38.9 percent) over the 
year.

County employment and wage data are from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) 
program, which provides the only detailed quarterly and annual universe count of establishments, 
employment, and wages at the county, metropolitan statistical area, state, and national levels by detailed 
industry. These data are published within 6 months following the end of each quarter.

Large County Employment

In June 2017, national employment was 145.2 million (as measured by the QCEW program). Over the 
year, employment increased 1.7 percent, or 2.4 million. In June 2017, the 346 U.S. counties with 75,000 
or more jobs accounted for 72.7 percent of total U.S. employment and 77.7 percent of total wages. These 
346 counties had a net job growth of 1.8 million over the year, accounting for 76.8 percent of the overall 
U.S. employment increase. The 5 counties with the largest increases in employment levels had a 
combined over-the-year employment gain of 258,900 jobs, which was 10.8 percent of the overall job 
increase for the U.S. (See table A.) 

Employment declined in 23 of the largest counties from June 2016 to June 2017. Lucas, Ohio, had the 
largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment (-1.9 percent), followed by Caddo, La.; 
Kanawha, W.Va.; Shawnee, Kan.; and Anchorage, Alaska. (See table 1.)

Table A.  Large counties ranked by June 2017 employment, June 2016-17 employment increase, and 
June 2016-17 percent increase in employment 

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                                       Employment in large counties
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        June 2017 employment      |      Increase in employment,     |  Percent increase in employment, 
            (thousands)           |            June 2016-17          |            June 2016-17
                                  |            (thousands)           |                  
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                                  |                                  |                                  
 United States           145,186.4| United States             2,407.0| United States                 1.7
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                                  |                                  |                                  
 Los Angeles, Calif.       4,373.6| Los Angeles, Calif.          71.9| Midland, Texas                7.3
 Cook, Ill.                2,598.4| Maricopa, Ariz.              61.2| Weld, Colo.                   5.3
 New York, N.Y.            2,469.1| King, Wash.                  44.2| Utah, Utah                    5.2
 Harris, Texas             2,284.5| New York, N.Y.               41.1| York, S.C.                    4.8
 Maricopa, Ariz.           1,891.7| Dallas, Texas                40.5| Elkhart, Ind.                 4.7
 Dallas, Texas             1,686.9| Orange, Calif.               33.2| Davis, Utah                   4.5
 Orange, Calif.            1,598.1| San Diego, Calif.            28.9| Clark, Wash.                  4.4
 San Diego, Calif.         1,440.9| Fulton, Ga.                  27.9| Deschutes, Ore.               4.3
 King, Wash.               1,369.7| Clark, Nev.                  26.9| Boone, Ky.                    4.2
 Miami-Dade, Fla.          1,111.0| Orange, Fla.                 26.5| Williamson, Tenn.             4.1
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Large County Average Weekly Wages

Average weekly wages for the nation increased to $1,020, a 3.2 percent increase, during the year ending 
in the second quarter of 2017. Among the 346 largest counties, 325 had over-the-year increases in 
average weekly wages. New Hanover, N.C., had the largest percentage wage increase among the largest 
U.S. counties (11.9 percent). (See table B.)

Of the 346 largest counties, 19 experienced an over-the-year decrease in average weekly wages. 
McLean, Ill., had the largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages (-20.4 percent), followed by 
Union, N.J.; Warren, Ohio; Somerset, N.J.; Fairfield, Conn.; and Washington, Ore. (See table 1.)

Table B.  Large counties ranked by second quarter 2017 average weekly wages, second quarter 2016-17
increase in average weekly wages, and second quarter 2016-17 percent increase in average weekly wages 

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                                  Average weekly wage in large counties
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        Average weekly wage,      |    Increase in average weekly    |    Percent increase in average   
        second quarter 2017       |    wage, second quarter 2016-17  |        weekly wage, second	
                                  |                                  |          quarter 2016-17
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                                  |                                  |                                  
 United States              $1,020| United States                 $32| United States                 3.2
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                                  |                                  |                                  
 Santa Clara, Calif.        $2,392| San Mateo, Calif.            $214| New Hanover, N.C.            11.9
 San Mateo, Calif.           2,093| Santa Clara, Calif.           141| San Mateo, Calif.            11.4
 San Francisco, Calif.       1,941| Midland, Texas                135| Midland, Texas               11.4
 New York, N.Y.              1,907| San Francisco, Calif.         132| Kitsap, Wash.                11.0
 Washington, D.C.            1,675| Morris, N.J.                  102| Clackamas, Ore.              10.0
 Suffolk, Mass.              1,651| Kitsap, Wash.                  97| Bell, Texas                   9.6
 Arlington, Va.              1,609| New Hanover, N.C.              94| St. Louis, Minn.              9.5
 Fairfax, Va.                1,542| Clackamas, Ore.                93| Newport News City, Va.        7.4
 Morris, N.J.                1,525| King, Wash.                    83| San Francisco, Calif.         7.3
 Middlesex, Mass.            1,522| Bell, Texas                    77| Washington, Ark.              7.2
                                  |                                  | Morris, N.J.                  7.2
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Ten Largest U.S. Counties

All of the largest counties had over-the-year percentage increases in employment in June 2017. King, 
Wash., and Maricopa, Ariz., had the largest gain (3.3 percent). Within King, trade, transportation, and 
utilities had the largest over-the-year employment level increase, with a gain of 16,004 jobs, or 6.4 
percent. Within Maricopa, education and health services had the largest over-the-year employment level 
increase, with a gain of 11,768 jobs, or 4.2 percent. Cook, Ill., had the lowest percentage increase in 
employment among the 10 largest counties (0.3 percent). Within Cook, leisure and hospitality had the 
largest over-the-year employment level increase, with a gain of 7,020 jobs, or 2.4 percent. (See table 2.)

Average weekly wages increased over the year in 9 of the 10 largest U.S. counties. King, Wash., 
experienced the largest percentage gain in average weekly wages (6.0 percent). Within King, trade, 
transportation, and utilities had the largest impact on the county’s average weekly wage growth. Within 
trade, transportation, and utilities, average weekly wages increased by $183, or 12.8 percent, over the 
year. Harris, Texas, had the only percent loss in average weekly wages among the 10 largest counties 
(-0.4 percent). Within Harris, natural resources and mining had the largest impact on the county’s average 
weekly wage growth with a decrease of $290 (-9.0 percent) over the year. 

For More Information

The tables included in this release contain data for the nation and for the 346 U.S. counties with annual 
average employment levels of 75,000 or more in 2016. June 2017 employment and 2017 second quarter 
average weekly wages for all states are provided in table 3 of this release.

The data are derived from reports submitted by employers who are subject to unemployment insurance 
(UI) laws. The 9.9 million employer reports cover 145.2 million full- and part-time workers. Data for the 
second quarter of 2017 will be available later at www.bls.gov/cew. Additional information about the 
quarterly employment and wages data is available in the Technical Note. More information about 
QCEW data may be obtained by calling (202) 691-6567.

The most current news release on quarterly measures of gross job flows is available from QCEW 
Business Employment Dynamics at www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/cewbd.pdf.

Several BLS regional offices issue QCEW news releases targeted to local data users. Links to these 
releases are available at www.bls.gov/cew/cewregional.htm.
_____________
The County Employment and Wages release for third quarter 2017 is scheduled to be released on 
Thursday, March 8, 2018.





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Last Modified Date: December 05, 2017