Usual Weekly Earnings Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EST) Thursday, January 17, 2019                       USDL-19-0077

Technical information: (202) 691-6378  *  *
Media contact:         (202) 691-5902  *

                                  FOURTH QUARTER 2018

Median weekly earnings of the nation's 115.9 million full-time wage and salary workers
were $900 in the fourth quarter of 2018 (not seasonally adjusted), the U.S. Bureau of
Labor Statistics reported today. This was 5.0 percent higher than a year earlier,
compared with a gain of 2.2 percent in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban
Consumers (CPI-U) over the same period.

Data on usual weekly earnings are collected as part of the Current Population Survey,
a nationwide sample survey of households in which respondents are asked, among other
things, how much each wage and salary worker usually earns. (See the Technical Note
in this news release.) Data shown in this news release are not seasonally adjusted
unless otherwise specified.

Highlights from the fourth-quarter data:

   --Median weekly earnings of full-time workers were $900 in the fourth quarter
     of 2018. Women had median weekly earnings of $794, or 80.0 percent of the
     $993 median for men. (See table 2.)

   --The women's-to-men's earnings ratio varied by race and ethnicity. White
     women earned 79.7 percent as much as their male counterparts, compared
     with 86.0 percent for Black women, 74.6 percent for Asian women, and 82.9
     percent for Hispanic women. (See table 2.)

   --Among the major race and ethnicity groups, median weekly earnings of Blacks
     ($712) and Hispanics ($684) working at full-time jobs were lower than those
     of Whites ($931) and Asians ($1,095). By sex, median weekly earnings for
     Black men were $773, or 75.5 percent of the median for White men ($1,024).
     Median earnings for Hispanic men were $736, or 71.9 percent of the median
     for White men. The difference was less among women, as Black women's median
     earnings were $665, or 81.5 percent of those for White women ($816), and
     earnings for Hispanic women were $610, or 74.8 percent of those for White
     women. Earnings of Asian men ($1,256) and women ($937) were higher than those 
     of their White counterparts. (See table 2.) 

   --By age, median weekly earnings were highest for men ages 55 to 64 at $1,191. 
     Usual weekly earnings were highest for women ages 35 to 64: median weekly 
     earnings were $877 for women ages 35 to 44, $876 for women ages 45 to 54, 
     and $895 for women ages 55 to 64. Men and women ages 16 to 24 had the lowest 
     median weekly earnings, $609 and $539, respectively. (See table 3.)

   --Among the major occupational groups, persons employed full time in management,
     professional, and related occupations had the highest median weekly earnings--
     $1,505 for men and $1,102 for women. Men and women employed in service jobs
     earned the least, $675 and $512, respectively. (See table 4.)

   --By educational attainment, full-time workers age 25 and over without a high
     school diploma had median weekly earnings of $543, compared with $746 for
     high school graduates (no college) and $1,340 for those holding at least a
     bachelor's degree. Among college graduates with advanced degrees (master's,
     professional, and doctoral degrees), the highest earning 10 percent of male
     workers made $3,909 or more per week, compared with $2,884 or more for their
     female counterparts. (See table 5.)

   --Seasonally adjusted median weekly earnings were $897 in the fourth quarter
     of 2018, little changed from the previous quarter ($893). (See table 1.)

Annual Averages for 2017 and 2018

In addition to the data for the fourth quarter, this news release includes 2017 and 
2018 annual averages on median weekly earnings for major demographic and occupational
groups, and 2018 annual average data for educational attainment groups. (See tables
7, 8, and 9.) Annual average data on median usual weekly earnings for men and women 
by detailed occupational categories will be posted online at when they become available.

  |                                                                          |
  |        Revision of Seasonally Adjusted Usual Weekly Earnings Data        |
  |                                                                          |
  |Seasonally adjusted median usual weekly earnings data shown in table 1    |
  |of this news release have been revised using updated seasonal adjustment  |
  |factors from the Current Population Survey, a procedure done at the end   |
  |of each calendar year. The revisions directly affected the number of      |
  |full-time wage and salary workers and current dollar estimates of median  |
  |weekly earnings; estimates of constant (1982-84) dollar median weekly     |
  |earnings were indirectly affected. Seasonally adjusted estimates back to  |
  |the first quarter of 2014 were subject to revision.                       |
  |                                                                          |
  |The Usual Weekly Earnings news release for the first quarter of 2019,     |
  |scheduled for release on April 16, 2019, will incorporate revisions to    |
  |the seasonally adjusted data for the median weekly earnings in constant   |
  |(1982-84) dollars. Seasonally adjusted constant (1982-84) dollar estimates|
  |back to the first quarter of 2014 will be subject to revision due to      |
  |annual revisions to seasonally adjusted data for the Consumer Price Index |
  |for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U).                                          |

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Last Modified Date: January 17, 2019