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17-1057-SAN
Monday, July 24, 2017

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County Employment and Wages in Oregon – Fourth Quarter 2016

All six of Oregon’s large counties had employment gains from December 2015 to December 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported today. (Large counties are defined as those with employment of 75,000 or more as measured by 2015 annual average employment.) Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that all of the large counties in Oregon had rates of job gain above the 1.2-percent national average. Employment increases ranged from 2.8 percent in Washington and Marion Counties to 1.8 percent in Multnomah County. (See table 1.)

Nationally, employment increased from December 2015 to December 2016 in 280 of the 344 largest U.S. counties. Williamson, Tenn., had the largest percentage increase in the country, up 5.1 percent over the year. Lafayette, La., had the largest percentage employment decline among the large U.S. counties, down 5.1 percent.

Among the large counties in Oregon, Multnomah had the highest employment (498,800) in December 2016. Together, the six large counties accounted for 71.9 percent of Oregon’s total employment. Nationwide, the 344 largest counties made up 72.8 percent of total U.S. employment.

From the fourth quarter of 2015 to the fourth quarter of 2016, Washington County’s 5.8-percent decline in average weekly wages was the largest among Oregon’s large counties. Nationally, the average weekly wage decreased 1.5 percent to $1,067 in the fourth quarter of 2016. This is one of only eight declines for the nation in the history of the series which, dates back to 1978.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 30 counties with employment below 75,000 in Oregon. Wage levels in all of these smaller counties were below the national average. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

Three of Oregon’s 6 large counties had over-the-year wage decreases in December 2016. As noted, the largest decline was in Washington County (-5.8 percent). Washington County also had the highest weekly wage among the state’s largest counties ($1,209). Three large counties had over-the-year wage gains in the fourth quarter of 2016. Jackson County had the largest increase (1.5 percent).

Among the 344 large U.S. counties, 290 had over-the-year wage decreases in the fourth quarter of 2016.  McLean, Ill., had the largest percentage decline in average weekly wages (-9.2 percent). Clay, Mo., had the second largest decrease in average weekly wages, down 8.3 percent, followed by Lafayette, La. (-8.0 percent) and Douglas, Colo. (-6.8 percent).

Forty-eight large U.S. counties experienced over-the-year increases in average weekly wages. Clayton, Ga., had the largest wage gain, up 11.3 percent from the fourth quarter of 2015. Washington, Pa., was second with a wage gain of 4.9 percent, followed by Marin, Calif. (4.3 percent) and Elkhart, Ind. (4.0 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Average weekly wages in Washington County ($1,209, 49th) and Multnomah County ($1,099, 76th) placed in the top third among the 344 largest U.S. counties. Average weekly wages in the state’s remaining four large counties ranged from $987 to $803 in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Nationally, 100 large counties had average weekly wages above the U.S. average in the fourth quarter of 2016. Santa Clara, Calif., held the top position with an average weekly wage of $2,365. New York, N.Y., was second at $2,212, followed by San Mateo, Calif., at $2,098 and San Francisco, Calif., at $2,068.

Seventy-one percent of the large U.S. counties (243) had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,067. Cameron, Texas, had the lowest weekly wage ($640), followed by Hidalgo, Texas ($648) and Horry, S.C. ($654).

Average weekly wages in Oregon’s smaller counties

All of the 30 smaller counties in Oregon, those with employment below 75,000, had average weekly wages lower than the national average of $1,067. Benton County had the highest weekly wage ($981), followed by Morrow ($953). Wheeler had the lowest weekly wage in the state, averaging $551 in the fourth quarter of 2016. (See table 2.)

When all 36 counties in Oregon were considered, 7 counties had average weekly wages under $699, 17 reported wages from $700 to $799, 7 had wages from $800 to $899, 3 had wages from $900 to $999, and 2 had wages above $1,000. (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 2015 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 2016 version of the national news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2015 are now available online at https://www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn15.htm. The 2016 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available in September 2017.

The County Employment and Wages release for first quarter 2017 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, September 6, 2017.

Beginning with the release of first quarter 2017 data, the program will switch to the 2017 version of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) as the basis for the assignment and tabulation of economic data by industry. For more information on the change, please see the Federal Register notice at www.census.gov/eos/www/naics/federal_register_notices/notices/fr08au16.pdf.


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 9.7 million employer reports cover 141.9 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 (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.

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 Oregon, fourth quarter 2016
Area Employment Average weekly wage (1)
December 2016 (thousands) Percent change, December 2015-16 (2) National ranking by percent change (3) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (3) Percent change, fourth quarter 2015-16 (2) National ranking by percent change (3)

United States (4)

143,749.9 1.2 -- $1,067 -- -1.5 --

Oregon

1,860.7 2.4 -- 970 22 -1.0 16

Clackamas, Ore.

159.6 2.4 76 987 161 -1.0 120

Jackson, Ore.

87.3 2.4 76 803 319 1.5 12

Lane, Ore.

153.9 2.4 76 845 295 0.8 24

Marion, Ore.

149.4 2.8 50 861 283 0.7 25

Multnomah, Ore.

498.8 1.8 114 1,099 76 -0.1 55

Washington, Ore.

288.2 2.8 50 1,209 49 -5.8 339

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 Oregon, fourth quarter 2016
Area Employment December 2016 Average Weekly Wage(1)

United States(2)

143,749,910 $1,067

Oregon

1,860,691 970

Baker

5,420 689

Benton

37,106 981

Clackamas

159,594 987

Clatsop

17,909 702

Columbia

11,090 729

Coos

22,784 729

Crook

5,985 854

Curry

6,492 674

Deschutes

77,821 838

Douglas

37,934 767

Gilliam

793 769

Grant

2,370 719

Harney

2,414 661

Hood River

13,062 756

Jackson

87,261 803

Jefferson

6,491 720

Josephine

26,225 717

Klamath

22,793 733

Lake

2,442 737

Lane

153,925 845

Lincoln

17,850 698

Linn

45,746 837

Malheur

12,837 664

Marion

149,400 861

Morrow

5,473 953

Multnomah

498,798 1,099

Polk

19,540 703

Sherman

836 894

Tillamook

9,167 724

Umatilla

29,966 749

Union

9,950 714

Wallowa

2,471 672

Wasco

11,073 758

Washington

288,202 1,209

Wheeler

308 551

Yamhill

34,580 791

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

United States (2)

143,749.9 1.2 1067 -- -1.5 --

Alabama

1,932.6 0.7 901 35 -1.3 21

Alaska

310.0 -1.9 1038 17 -5.2 51

Arizona

2,760.1 2.1 945 25 -2.2 34

Arkansas

1,205.4 0.4 827 47 -1.4 22

California

16,923.3 1.9 1271 5 -0.3 4

Colorado

2,588.6 2.0 1086 12 -1.5 24

Connecticut

1,685.5 0.0 1289 4 -3.4 46

Delaware

441.2 -0.1 1055 15 -2.9 44

District of Columbia

760.9 0.5 1763 1 0.6 2

Florida

8,538.9 2.7 942 27 -1.8 28

Georgia

4,349.3 2.4 993 20 -0.9 14

Hawaii

658.3 0.7 954 24 -0.3 4

Idaho

691.6 3.2 800 50 -0.4 8

Illinois

5,947.6 0.4 1122 9 -2 31

Indiana

3,021.7 0.9 883 38 -0.9 14

Iowa

1,542.0 0.1 911 33 -1 16

Kansas

1,384.5 0.1 877 39 -2.2 34

Kentucky

1,894.2 0.6 874 41 -1.4 22

Louisiana

1,907.4 -1.6 914 32 -2.9 44

Maine

602.6 0.8 855 43 -2.1 33

Maryland

2,666.7 1.0 1169 7 -0.4 8

Massachusetts

3,530.4 1.3 1352 2 -2.4 39

Michigan

4,283.0 1.5 1026 19 -1.6 25

Minnesota

2,839.7 1.2 1062 14 -1.1 18

Mississippi

1,134.0 0.0 756 51 -1.8 28

Missouri

2,783.2 0.9 918 31 -1.7 27

Montana

456.5 0.7 822 48 0.5 3

Nebraska

972.4 0.0 876 40 -0.5 10

Nevada

1,307.8 2.7 924 29 -1.2 20

New Hampshire

656.9 1.3 1092 10 -4.1 48

New Jersey

4,042.1 1.4 1239 6 -1.9 30

New Mexico

811.4 0.0 844 45 -2.5 41

New York

9,332.5 1.2 1342 3 -2.3 36

North Carolina

4,326.3 1.8 932 28 -0.7 13

North Dakota

414.4 -3.2 978 21 -4.2 49

Ohio

5,365.6 0.7 943 26 -2.3 36

Oklahoma

1,587.7 -1.2 864 42 -3.5 47

Oregon

1,860.7 2.4 970 22 -1 16

Pennsylvania

5,799.8 0.7 1039 16 -2.3 36

Rhode Island

478.3 0.0 1027 18 -1.6 25

South Carolina

2,024.3 1.8 855 43 -0.6 12

South Dakota

419.9 0.5 828 46 -0.5 10

Tennessee

2,947.5 1.8 970 22 -1.1 18

Texas

11,974.7 1.2 1072 13 -2.5 41

Utah

1,415.1 2.9 910 34 -0.3 4

Vermont

312.6 0.1 897 36 -2.4 39

Virginia

3,831.6 0.6 1091 11 -0.3 4

Washington

3,227.9 2.8 1150 8 1.7 1

West Virginia

693.1 -1.6 809 49 -2.5 41

Wisconsin

2,842.4 0.5 924 29 -2 31

Wyoming

265.8 -3.9 894 37 -4.7 50

Puerto Rico

928.2 -0.3 555 (3) -1.9 (3)

Virgin Islands

38.5 0.2 769 (3) -1.8 (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: Monday, July 24, 2017