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Friday, August 9, 2013

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County Employment and Wages in Nebraska – Fourth Quarter 2012


The two largest counties in Nebraska reported employment gains from December 2011 to December 2012, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (Large counties are defined as those with employment of 75,000 or more as measured by 2011 annual average employment.) Regional Commissioner Charlene Peiffer noted that employment rose 2.5 percent in Lancaster County and 2.0 percent in Douglas County, both higher than the national increase of 1.9 percent.

Nationally, employment increased in 287 of the 328 largest U.S. counties. Elkhart County, Ind., recorded the highest percentage increase in the country, up 7.4 percent over the year. Sangamon, Ill., registered the largest percentage employment decline, down 2.5 percent.

Among the two largest counties in Nebraska, employment was higher in Douglas (321,600) in December 2012. Lancaster County recorded an employment level of 160,100. Collectively, Nebraska’s two large counties accounted for 51.7 percent of the state's employment. Nationwide, the 328 largest counties made up 71.3 percent of total U.S. employment.

The average weekly wage in Douglas was $905 in the fourth quarter of 2012, an increase of 5.5 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011. Average weekly wages in Lancaster were $792, a 3.8- percent increase from one year earlier. (See table 1.) Nationally, the average weekly wage rose 4.7 percent to $1,000 in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Employment and wage levels (but not over-the-year changes) are also available for the 91 counties in Nebraska with employment below 75,000. Among counties with employment below 75,000, only one, Nemaha, had average weekly wages ($1,023) above the national average. All 90 of the remaining smaller counties had average weekly wages below the national average of $1,000. (See table 2.)

Large county wage changes

As noted, average weekly wages in Lancaster County rose 2.5 percent, ranking it 80th among the nation's 328 largest counties. Douglas ranked 123th nationwide with a 2.0-percent increase in average weekly wages. (See table 1.)

Nationally, 316 of the 328 largest counties registered over-the-year wage increases. San Mateo, Calif., had the largest wage gain, up 107.3 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011. Douglas, Colo., was second with a wage increase of 48.0 percent, followed by the counties of Virginia Beach City, Va. (13.3 percent), and Rockingham, N.H. (12.0 percent).

Among the large U.S. counties, 10 experienced over-the-year wage decreases. Lake, Ohio, had the largest wage decrease with a loss of 3.2 percent. Passaic, N.J., had the second largest decrease in average weekly wages, down 2.1 percent from the fourth quarter 2011, followed by Genesee, Mich. (-1.7 percent), Atlantic, N.J. (-1.4 percent), and Benton, Wash. (-1.0 percent).

Large county average weekly wages

Douglas County’s $905 average weekly wage was below that of the nation, placing it in the middle of the national ranking at 164th in the fourth quarter of 2012. Lancaster County ranked 278th in the nation with an average weekly wage of $792.

Nationally, 97 large counties registered average weekly wages above the U.S. average of $1,000 in the fourth quarter of 2012. San Mateo, Calif., held the top position among the highest-paid large counties with an average weekly wage of $3,240. New York, N.Y., was second at $2,107, followed by Santa Clara, Calif. ($1,906).

Seventy percent of the largest U.S. counties (231) reported weekly wages below the national average. Horry County, S.C., reported the lowest wage ($576), followed by the Texas counties of Cameron ($609) and Hidalgo ($612). Wages in these lowest-ranked counties were less than twenty percent of the average weekly wage reported for the highest-ranked county, San Mateo.

Average weekly wages in Nebraska's smaller counties

Among counties with employment below 75,000, Washington ($986) and Stanton ($962) had average weekly wages above those in the state’s two largest counties. Nemaha registered the highest average weekly wage of all 93 counties in the state. Arthur County reported the lowest weekly wage in the state, averaging $391 in the fourth quarter of 2012. (See table 2.)

Eight counties reported average weekly wages under $500, 24 reported wages from $500 to $599, 35 reported wages from $600 to $699, 18 reported wages from $700 to $799, and 8 reported wages of $800 or more. (See chart 1.)

Additional statistics and other information

Quarterly 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 the QCEW Web site at 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 2011 edition of this publication, which was published in October 2012, contains selected data produced by Business Employment Dynamics (BED) on job gains and losses, as well as selected data from the first quarter 2012 version of the news release. Tables and additional content from Employment and Wages Annual Averages 2011 are now available online at www.bls.gov/cew/cewbultn10htm. The 2012 edition of Employment and Wages Annual Averages Online will be available later in 2013.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; Federal Relay Service: 1-800-877-8339.

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 9.2 million employer reports cover 133.7 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 www.bls.gov/cew/; however, data in QCEW press releases have been revised and may not match the data contained on the BLS 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.


Table 1. Covered (1) employment and wages in the United States and the 2 largest counties in Nebraska, fourth quarter 2012 (2)
Area Employment Average weekly wage (3)
December 2012 (thousands) Percent change, December 2011-12 (4) National ranking by percent change (5) Average weekly wage National ranking by level (5) Percent change, fourth quarter 2011-12 (4) National ranking by percent change (5)

United States (6)

133,726.8 1.9 -- $1,000 -- 4.7 --

Nebraska

931.3 2.2 -- 797 43 4.6 14

Douglas, Neb.

321.6 2.0 123 905 164 5.5 45

Lancaster, Neb.

160.1 2.5 80 792 278 3.8 128

Footnotes:
(1) Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.
(2) Data are preliminary.
(3) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(4) Percent changes were computed from quarterly employment and pay data adjusted for noneconomic county reclassifications.
(5) Ranking does not include the county of San Juan, Puerto Rico.
(6) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.

Table 2. Covered (1) employment and wages in the United States and all counties in Nebraska, fourth quarter 2012 (2)
Area Employment December 2012 Average weekly wage (3)

United States (4)

133,726,808 $1,000

Nebraska

931,313 797

Adams

15,352 708

Antelope

2,045 642

Arthur

92 391

Banner

160 664

Blaine

155 465

Boone

2,359 654

Box Butte

4,029 644

Boyd

585 480

Brown

1,241 581

Buffalo

26,316 706

Burt

1,890 632

Butler

2,601 730

Cass

4,947 667

Cedar

2,729 645

Chase

1,818 677

Cherry

2,254 517

Cheyenne

5,802 806

Clay

2,484 823

Colfax

4,857 697

Cuming

3,841 701

Custer

4,162 699

Dakota

11,802 718

Dawes

3,372 558

Dawson

11,262 665

Deuel

649 572

Dixon

1,759 606

Dodge

16,743 660

Douglas

321,628 905

Dundy

661 632

Fillmore

2,323 723

Franklin

832 622

Frontier

789 562

Furnas

1,922 612

Gage

9,030 628

Garden

596 546

Garfield

844 559

Gosper

433 616

Grant

257 614

Greeley

641 570

Hall

35,193 686

Hamilton

3,178 805

Harlan

853 553

Hayes

220 575

Hitchcock

711 617

Holt

4,531 625

Hooker

292 439

Howard

1,449 588

Jefferson

3,303 619

Johnson

1,641 637

Kearney

2,284 669

Keith

3,155 589

Keya Paha

137 577

Kimball

1,559 758

Knox

2,946 537

Lancaster

160,134 792

Lincoln

14,681 700

Logan

202 499

Loup

111 413

Madison

21,518 691

McPherson

60 494

Merrick

2,253 697

Morrill

1,588 699

Nance

1,048 616

Nemaha

3,206 1,023

Nuckolls

1,467 582

Otoe

6,333 633

Pawnee

868 581

Perkins

1,117 762

Phelps

4,746 743

Pierce

1,972 669

Platte

19,318 727

Polk

1,444 703

Red Willow

5,313 647

Richardson

2,463 561

Rock

462 594

Saline

6,914 731

Sarpy

62,763 786

Saunders

4,766 640

Scotts Bluff

17,149 686

Seward

6,021 751

Sheridan

1,690 516

Sherman

815 504

Sioux

173 514

Stanton

1,428 962

Thayer

2,486 862

Thomas

248 467

Thurston

3,036 763

Valley

1,751 623

Washington

8,429 986

Wayne

4,341 576

Webster

1,038 559

Wheeler

307 590

York

7,563 719

Footnotes:
(1) Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.
(2) Data are preliminary.
(3) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(4) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.

Table 3. Covered (1) employment and wages by state, fourth quarter 2012 (2)
State Employment Average weekly wage (3)
December
2012
(thousands)
Percent change,
December
2011-12
Average
weekly
wage
National
ranking by
level
Percent change,
fourth quarter
2011-12
National
ranking by
percent change

United States (4)

133,726.8 1.9 $1,000 -- 4.7 --

Alabama

1,847.3 1.1 854 33 2.6 41

Alaska

314.8 1.1 1,007 15 2.7 38

Arizona

2,509.2 2.4 912 22 3.3 33

Arkansas

1,160.3 0.2 767 47 4.2 19

California

15,216.3 3.3 1,186 5 7.8 2

Colorado

2,311.4 2.7 1,032 11 5.8 5

Connecticut

1,657.6 1.0 1,253 3 5.3 8

Delaware

411.0 1.2 1,044 9 6.1 4

District of Columbia

721.5 1.7 1,703 1 2.2 47

Florida

7,535.5 2.3 880 27 3.9 23

Georgia

3,889.9 1.7 927 21 4.7 13

Hawaii

620.7 2.1 868 30 2.7 38

Idaho

618.4 2.0 732 50 2.1 48

Illinois

5,697.9 1.1 1,058 8 4.4 17

Indiana

2,850.5 1.8 816 40 3.4 32

Iowa

1,486.6 1.3 821 39 3.7 26

Kansas

1,339.2 1.5 835 37 4.4 17

Kentucky

1,796.0 1.4 801 42 1.8 49

Louisiana

1,891.9 1.0 884 26 4.1 20

Maine

582.2 0.2 773 46 2.4 45

Maryland

2,544.1 1.2 1,086 7 2.5 42

Massachusetts

3,279.3 1.3 1,248 4 4.8 11

Michigan

3,988.9 1.9 954 18 2.3 46

Minnesota

2,677.2 1.6 985 16 5.1 10

Mississippi

1,096.5 1.1 720 51 3.2 34

Missouri

2,641.9 0.9 863 31 4.6 14

Montana

434.6 1.9 757 48 4.1 20

Nebraska

931.3 2.2 797 43 4.6 14

Nevada

1,145.8 1.9 877 28 2.9 35

New Hampshire

620.8 0.8 1,023 13 5.5 6

New Jersey

3,846.4 1.1 1,172 6 2.9 35

New Mexico

796.8 1.5 802 41 0.4 51

New York

8,741.9 1.4 1,280 2 6.9 3

North Carolina

3,963.9 1.9 854 33 3.6 29

North Dakota

421.0 6.1 944 20 8.4 1

Ohio

5,098.0 1.3 887 25 3.6 29

Oklahoma

1,565.3 1.9 847 35 3.9 23

Oregon

1,654.1 1.4 871 29 2.5 42

Pennsylvania

5,629.8 0.5 972 17 3.8 25

Rhode Island

456.4 1.0 945 19 2.7 38

South Carolina

1,832.2 2.0 784 45 2.8 37

South Dakota

401.7 1.2 749 49 3.5 31

Tennessee

2,710.4 2.1 903 24 5.2 9

Texas

10,956.4 3.2 1,027 12 5.5 6

Utah

1,246.6 3.7 844 36 4.5 16

Vermont

306.1 0.7 829 38 2.5 42

Virginia

3,663.7 1.1 1,042 10 3.7 26

Washington

2,902.0 2.1 1,017 14 4.0 22

West Virginia

714.3 0.0 788 44 1.5 50

Wisconsin

2,723.6 1.2 855 32 4.8 11

Wyoming

277.6 0.2 908 23 3.7 26

Puerto Rico

978.6 1.6 550 (5) -0.4 (5)

Virgin Islands

39.8 -7.9 738 (5) -3.9 (5)

(1) Includes workers covered by Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) programs.
(2) Data are preliminary.
(3) Average weekly wages were calculated using unrounded data.
(4) Totals for the United States do not include data for Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.
(5) Data not included in the national ranking.

Chart 1. Average weekly wages by county in Nebraska, fourth quarter 2012

Last Modified Date: August 12, 2013

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