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Weekly Earnings of Wage & Salary Workers



Median weekly earnings of the nation’s 100.6 million full-time wage and salary workers were $753 in the second quarter of 2011 (not seasonally adjusted), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This was 1.8 percent higher than a year earlier, compared with a gain of 3.4 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. Data shown in this release are not seasonally adjusted unless otherwise specified. Highlights from the second-quarter data are:

  • Seasonally adjusted median weekly earnings were $756 in the second quarter of 2011, little changed from the previous quarter ($749).
  • On a not seasonally adjusted basis, median weekly earnings were $753 in the second quarter of 2011. Women who usually worked full time had median weekly earnings of $689, or 83.5 percent of the $825 median for men.
  • The female-to-male earnings ratio varied by race and ethnicity. White women earned 82.9 percent of their male counterparts, compared with black (88.0 percent), Asian (77.0 percent), and Hispanic women (89.4 percent).
  • Among the major race and ethnicity groups, median weekly earnings for black men working at full-time jobs were $673 per week, 79.2 percent of the median for white men ($850). The difference was less among women, as black women’s median earnings ($592) were 84.0 percent of those for white women ($705). Overall, median earnings of Hispanics who worked full time ($565) were lower than those of blacks ($623), whites ($770), and Asians ($872).
  • Usual weekly earnings of full-time workers varied by age. Among men, those age 45 to 54 and 55 to 64 had the highest median weekly earnings, $974 and $1,001, respectively. Usual weekly earnings were highest for women age 35 to 64; weekly earnings were $742 for women age 35 to 44, $734 for women age 45 to 54, and $753 for women age 55 to 64. Workers age 16 to 24 had the lowest median weekly earnings, at $433.
  • Among the major occupational groups, persons employed full time in management, professional, and related occupations had the highest median weekly earnings– $1,268 for men and $931 for women. Men and women employed in service jobs earned the least, $544 and $439, respectively.
  • By educational attainment, full-time workers age 25 and over without a high school diploma had median weekly earnings of $458, compared with $643 for high school graduates (no college) and $1,141 for those holding at least a bachelor’s degree. Among college graduates with advanced degrees (professional or master’s degree and above), the highest earning 10 percent of male workers made $3,144 or more per week, compared with $2,368 or more for their female counterparts.

For more information on the Second Quarter Earnings summary, you can contact the:
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics | Division of Labor Force Statistics
PSB Suite 4675, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE Washington, DC 20212-0001

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