BLS: Avg. weekly wage in R.I. increases 1.8% Y/Y in Q1

THE AVERAGE WEEKLY wage in Rhode Island increased 1.8% year over year through the end of the first quarter, the slowest rate in New England. Employment in the state increased 0.8% in that time, the third-lowest rate in the region. / BLOOMBERG NEWS FILE PHOTO/DANIEL ACKER
THE AVERAGE WEEKLY wage in Rhode Island increased 1.8% year over year through the end of the first quarter, the slowest rate in New England. Employment in the state increased 0.8% in that time, the third-lowest rate in the region. / BLOOMBERG NEWS FILE PHOTO/DANIEL ACKER

PROVIDENCE – The average weekly wage in Rhode Island increased 1.8% year over year through the end of the first quarter of 2019 to $1,104, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Wednesday.

Rhode Island’s wage growth was the slowest in New England and a full percentage point behind the increase in the average national weekly wage of 2.8% (to $1,184). Rhode Island’s average weekly wage was fourth highest in New England.

New England and national average weekly wages at the end of the first quarter (in order of highest average weekly wage):

  • Massachusetts: Increased 3.5% year over year to $1,561
  • Connecticut: Increased 2.3% year over year to $1,487
  • New Hampshire: Increased 3.1% year over year to $1,156
  • Rhode Island: Increased 1.8% year over year to $1,104
  • Vermont: Increased 3.7% year over year, the fastest rate in the region, to $950
  • Maine: Increased 3.1% year over year to $919
  • United States: Increased 2.8% over the year to $1,184

Rhode Island employment increased at the second-lowest rate in New England year over year through the end of the first quarter at 0.8%. All New England employment growth rates trailed the national rate of 1.4%.

Employment at the end of the quarter in Rhode Island was 474,700, a number that differs from the previous data provided by the state, the result of differences in how the federal government and the state measure employment.

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New England and national employment at the end of the first quarter (in order of year-over-year growth rate):

  • Maine: Increased 1.2% year over year to 599,800
  • New Hampshire: Increased 1.2% year over year to 656,200
  • Massachusetts: Increased 1.1% year over year to 3.6 million
  • Rhode Island: Increased 0.8% year over year to 474,700
  • Vermont: Increased 0.4% year over year to 309,100
  • Connecticut: Remained unchanged year over year at 1.7 million
  • United States: Increased 1.4% to 146.5 million

County figures:

The report also included data for the largest 356 counties in the United States, including Providence County and Kent County, and Bristol County, Mass.

Kent County had an average weekly wage of $1,021 at the end of the quarter, a 3.8% increase year over year. The increase rate ranked No. 75 among all 356 counties measured. Employment in the county increased 0.7% year over year to 75,100. The increase ranked No. 224 among all measured counties.

Providence County had an average weekly wage of $1,146 at the end of the quarter, a 0.5% increase year over year. The rate of increase ranked No. 312 among included counties. Employment in the county increased 0.3% year over year to 285,900. The employment increase rate ranked No. 263 among measured counties.

Bristol County, Mass., was reported to have an average weekly wage of $999 at the end of the quarter, a 4.2% increase year over year. The rate of increase ranked No. 60 among measured counties. Employment in the county increased 0.6% year over year (ranked No. 232 in the report) to 224,800.

Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor. You may reach him at Bergenheim@PBN.com.

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