Economic News Release

County Employment and Wages Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EST), Thursday, December 18, 2014	USDL-14-2250

Technical Information:	(202) 691-6567  *  *
Media Contact:		(202) 691-5902  *

Second Quarter 2014

From June 2013 to June 2014, employment increased in 305 of the 339 largest U.S. counties, the U.S. 
Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Weld, Colo., had the largest increase, with a gain of 8.9 
percent over the year, compared with national job growth of 2.0 percent. Within Weld, the largest 
employment increase occurred in natural resources and mining, which gained 2,636 jobs over the year 
(27.3 percent). Atlantic, N.J., had the largest over-the-year decrease in employment among the largest 
counties in the U.S. with a loss of 1.6 percent. County employment and wage data are compiled under 
the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program, which produces detailed 
information on county employment and wages within 6 months after the end of each quarter.

The U.S. average weekly wage increased 2.1 percent over the year, growing to $940 in the second 
quarter of 2014. Midland, Texas, had the largest over-the-year increase in average weekly wages with a 
gain of 9.0 percent. Within Midland, an average weekly wage gain of $142, or 7.5 percent, in natural 
resources and mining made the largest contribution to the county’s increase in average weekly wages. 
Williamson, Texas, experienced the largest decrease in average weekly wages with a loss of 2.7 percent 
over the year.

Table A.  Large counties ranked by June 2014 employment, June 2013-14 employment 
increase, and June 2013-14 percent increase in employment

                                       Employment in large counties
        June 2014 employment      |      Increase in employment,     |  Percent increase in employment, 
            (thousands)           |            June 2013-14          |            June 2013-14
                                  |            (thousands)           |                  
                                  |                                  |                                  
 United States           137,776.4| United States             2,674.6| United States                 2.0
                                  |                                  |                                  
 Los Angeles, Calif.       4,155.9| Los Angeles, Calif.          71.7| Weld, Colo.                   8.9
 Cook, Ill.                2,499.5| Harris, Texas                71.3| Benton, Ark.                  6.8
 New York, N.Y.            2,492.5| New York, N.Y.               65.8| Lee, Fla.                     6.3
 Harris, Texas             2,258.0| Dallas, Texas                52.0| Sarasota, Fla.                5.8
 Maricopa, Ariz.           1,717.1| Cook, Ill.                   43.9| Midland, Texas                5.5
 Dallas, Texas             1,544.6| King, Wash.                  42.7| Clark, Wash.                  5.3
 Orange, Calif.            1,477.2| Santa Clara, Calif.          37.8| Charleston, S.C.              5.2
 San Diego, Calif.         1,338.5| Maricopa, Ariz.              36.9| Montgomery, Texas             5.1
 King, Wash.               1,248.1| Clark, Nev.                  33.1| Mecklenburg, N.C.             4.9
 Miami-Dade, Fla.          1,026.2| Mecklenburg, N.C.            28.3| Lexington, S.C.               4.9
                                  |                                  |                                  

Large County Employment

In June 2014, national employment was 137.8 million (as measured by the QCEW program). Over the 
year, employment increased 2.0 percent, or 2.7 million. The 339 U.S. counties with 75,000 or more jobs 
accounted for 71.8 percent of total U.S. employment and 76.9 percent of total wages. These 339 
counties had a net job growth of 2.0 million over the year, accounting for 73.6 percent of the overall 
U.S. employment increase.

Weld, Colo., had the largest percentage increase in employment (8.9 percent) among the largest U.S. 
counties. The five counties with the largest increases in employment level were Los Angeles, Calif.; 
Harris, Texas; New York, N.Y.; Dallas, Texas; and Cook, Ill. These counties had a combined over-the-
year employment gain of 304,700 jobs, which was 11.4 percent of the overall job increase for the U.S. 
(See table A.)

Employment declined in 29 of the largest counties from June 2013 to June 2014. Atlantic, N.J., had the 
largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment (-1.6 percent). Within Atlantic, leisure and 
hospitality had the largest decrease in employment, with a loss of 2,817 jobs (-5.7 percent). Passaic, 
N.J., had the second largest percentage decrease in employment, followed by McLean, Ill.; Arlington, 
Va.; and Burlington, N.J. (See table 1.)

Table B.  Large counties ranked by second quarter 2014 average weekly wages, second quarter 2013-14
increase in average weekly wages, and second quarter 2013-14 percent increase in average weekly wages 

                                  Average weekly wage in large counties
        Average weekly wage,      |    Increase in average weekly    |    Percent increase in average 
        second quarter 2014       |    wage, second quarter 2013-14  |        weekly wage, second
                                  |                                  |          quarter 2013-14
                                  |                                  |                                  
 United States                $940| United States                 $19| United States                 2.1
                                  |                                  |                                  
 Santa Clara, Calif.        $1,886| San Mateo, Calif.            $107| Midland, Texas                9.0
 San Mateo, Calif.           1,740| Midland, Texas                105| Douglas, Colo.                8.8
 New York, N.Y.              1,732| Douglas, Colo.                 89| Hillsborough, N.H.            7.4
 San Francisco, Calif.       1,593| San Francisco, Calif.          76| Collier, Fla.                 6.8
 Washington, D.C.            1,569| Santa Clara, Calif.            76| San Mateo, Calif.             6.6
 Arlington, Va.              1,516| Hillsborough, N.H.             73| Calcasieu, La.                6.4
 Suffolk, Mass.              1,463| Washington, Ore.               61| Newport News City, Va.        6.2
 Fairfax, Va.                1,457| Collier, Fla.                  54| Weld, Colo.                   5.8
 Fairfield, Conn.            1,455| Newport News City, Va.         54| Washington, Ore.              5.5
 Middlesex, Mass.            1,386| Suffolk, Mass.                 52| Ingham, Mich.                 5.4
                                  |                                  |                                  

Large County Average Weekly Wages

Average weekly wages for the nation increased to $940, a 2.1 percent increase, during the year ending in 
the second quarter of 2014. Among the 339 largest counties, 312 had over-the-year increases in average 
weekly wages. Midland, Texas, had the largest wage increase among the largest U.S. counties (9.0 

Of the 339 largest counties, 22 experienced over-the-year decreases in average weekly wages. 
Williamson, Texas, had the largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages, with a loss of 2.7 
percent. Within Williamson, manufacturing had the largest impact on the county’s average weekly wage 
decrease. Within this industry, average weekly wages declined by $168 (-9.5 percent) over the year. 
Westchester, N.Y., had the second largest percentage decrease in average weekly wages, followed by 
Lake, Ind.; Bibb, Ga.; Washington, D.C.; and Chittenden, Vt. (See table 1.) The decline in average 
weekly wages in Washington, D.C., was largely due to a pay period effect in federal government wages. 
For more information see the concepts and methodology section of the Technical Note.

Ten Largest U.S. Counties

All of the 10 largest counties had over-the-year percentage increases in employment in June 2014. 
Dallas, Texas, and King, Wash., had the largest gain (3.5 percent). Within Dallas, professional and 
business services had the largest over-the-year employment level increase among all private industry 
groups with a gain of 15,108 jobs, or 5.1 percent. Trade, transportation, and utilities had the largest 
employment level increase among all private industry groups within King, with a gain of 11,204 jobs, or 
5.1 percent. Cook, Ill., Orange, Calif., and Los Angeles, Calif., tied for the smallest percentage increase 
in employment (1.8 percent) among the 10 largest counties. (See table 2.)

Average weekly wages increased over the year in all of the 10 largest U.S. counties. Harris, Texas, 
experienced the largest percentage gain in average weekly wages (3.4 percent). Within Harris, natural 
resources and mining had the largest impact on the county’s average weekly wage growth. Within this 
industry, average weekly wages increased by $154, or 5.0 percent, over the year. San Diego, Calif., and 
Maricopa, Ariz., tied for the smallest increase in average weekly wages (1.2 percent) among the 10 
largest counties.

For More Information

The tables included in this release contain data for the nation and for the 339 U.S. counties with annual 
average employment levels of 75,000 or more in 2013. June 2014 employment and 2014 second quarter 
average weekly wages for all states are provided in table 3 of this release.

The employment and wage data by county are compiled under the QCEW program, also known as the 
ES-202 program. The data are derived from reports submitted by every employer subject to 
unemployment insurance (UI) laws. The 9.4 million employer reports cover 137.8 million full- and part-
time workers. The QCEW program provides a quarterly and annual universe count of establishments, 
employment, and wages at the county, MSA, state, and national levels by detailed industry. Data for the 
second quarter of 2014 will be available electronically later at For additional 
information about the quarterly employment and wages data, please read the Technical Note. Additional 
information about the QCEW data may be obtained by calling (202) 691-6567.

Several BLS regional offices are issuing QCEW news releases targeted to local data users. For links to 
these releases, see

The County Employment and Wages release for third quarter 2014 is scheduled to be released on 
Thursday, March 19, 2015.

The PDF version of the news release

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Last Modified Date: December 18, 2014
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