II. Summary of the 2000 Annual Covered Employment and Wages (ES-202) Program


* In 2000, average statewide employment, weekly wage, and total payroll were higher than 1999 levels.
* Employment in Wyoming increased by 2.6 percent from 1999 to 2000.
* The average weekly wage increased by 4.6 percent from 1999 to 2000.
* From 1995 to 2000, employment rose by 8.8 percent.
* From 1995 to 2000, the average weekly wage climbed by 20.0 percent.

Average Employment

Employment, as measured by UI covered employment, is based on place of work rather than an employee’s place of residence. For example, an individual may work in Sweetwater County while living in Carbon County. Consequently, the number of jobs worked in an area does not always reflect the number of residents. In addition, the number of jobs in an industry or geographic area does not directly translate into the number of individuals employed. Although most individuals work in a single job, some people hold multiple jobs. In 1998, 14.8 percent of Wyoming workers held more than one job.4

Average annual employment in Wyoming rose by 5,909 jobs (2.6%) from 224,946 in 1999 to 230,855 in 2000. The industries with the largest employment in 2000 were Government (54,864 jobs) and Services (52,163 jobs). Government consisted of 7,461 Federal jobs, 11,748 State jobs, and 35,655 Local jobs.5 Agriculture 6 and Wholesale Trade had the smallest number of jobs with 3,527 and 7,740, respectively.

The highest growth in employment was in Mining (7.5% or 1,197 jobs) and Agriculture (3.4% or 117 jobs). Employment growth in Manufacturing was 3.3 percent. However, changes in the industry classification of a number of firms through the refiling process was the main contributor to the increase in the number of jobs (about 300) in Manufacturing rather than to real growth in the number of firms. The smallest growth in employment was in Finance, Insurance, & Real Estate (FIRE) (0.2% or 17 jobs). Transportation, Communications, & Public Utilities (TCPU) experienced a decline in employment of 0.8 percent (-91 jobs).

At the regional level, the Northeast region led Wyoming in employment increases with an additional 1,471 jobs, up 4.3 percent from 1999 to 2000. The Northwest region had the lowest increase in employment, adding only 225 jobs (0.6%). Campbell County experienced the largest increase in employment of the 23 counties (1,040 jobs or 6.0%).

Niobrara County saw the largest percentage decrease in employment at 4.1 percent (33 jobs). Complete regional and county employment data are available.

Total Payroll

Total payroll in Wyoming jumped by 7.4 percent ($400 million), from $5.8 billion to $6.2 billion, between 1999 and 2000. The industry with the largest payroll was Government ($1.5 billion), followed by Services ($1.1 billion). Agriculture and FIRE had the smallest total payrolls with $68.6 million and $254.7 million, respectively.

Although Agriculture had the smallest total payroll, it had the second largest percentage growth in payroll at 11.9 percent ($7.3 million).

Mining sustained the largest percentage growth at 20.2 percent ($157.5 million). The smallest was in TCPU at 2.9 percent ($11.8 million). The only industry with declining payroll was FIRE (-7.8% or -$21.7 million).

Regionally, the largest percentage growth in payroll occurred in the Central region at 13.1 percent. The Northwest and Southwest regions had the smallest payroll growth, each with 2.9 percent. At the county level, Natrona County had the largest increase in total payroll at 16.2 percent. Two counties, Niobrara and Fremont, experienced declines in total payroll of 1.8 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively. The payroll increase in the Central region and Natrona County was largely the result of a $77.3 million bonus paid in the fourth quarter of 2000 to some workers in oil & gas extraction. Additional regional and county total payroll data are available.

Average Weekly Wage

The average weekly wage in Wyoming rose 4.6 percent, from $493 in 1999 to $516 in 2000. Mining and Manufacturing experienced the largest increases of $111 and $35 per week, respectively. Retail Trade saw the smallest increase in average weekly wage with $6. Only FIRE saw a decline with a loss of $53, which may be partly attributable to a bonus paid in the third quarter of 1999 to employees of a company in Teton County. Because the one-time increase in the third quarter of 1999 is reflected in the 1999 yearly total, the average weekly wage in FIRE decreased from 1999 to 2000. If the bonus were not included, it is possible that wages may have remained flat or even increased.

Regionally, the largest growth in average weekly wage was in the Central region at 11.2 percent. The Southwest region had the lowest at 1.8 percent. The county with the largest growth in average weekly wage was Natrona County (13.6%). Two counties experienced declines: Teton County (-1.3%) and Fremont County (-1.1%). Growth in average weekly wage in the Central region and Natrona County was related to a fourth quarter bonus paid to some oil & gas workers.

Growth from 1995

Employment in Wyoming increased by 8.8 percent from 212,217 jobs in 19957 to 230,855 jobs in 2000 (see Table A). The largest job growth occurred in Construction (3,643 jobs or 25.7%). The smallest job growth occurred in TCPU (52 jobs or 0.5%).

Wyoming’s total payroll increased 30.6 percent, from $4.7 billion in 1995 to $6.2 billion in 2000 (see Table B). The largest increase in total payroll was in Construction (56.4%). Agriculture and Manufacturing had the second largest growth rate at 51.2 percent each. The lowest growth in total payroll was in Government (18.9%).

From 1995 to 2000, the average weekly wage in Wyoming rose from $430 to $516 (20.0%) (see Table C). The largest increase was in Manufacturing (28.8%) while the smallest was in Government (15.0%).

Summary of 2000 Data

For the most part, industries and geographic areas across Wyoming experienced increases in the number of jobs and wages paid from 1999 to 2000. Some of the gains or losses observed were due to one-time events, such as bonuses paid or changes in industrial classification. In addition, short-term growth did not necessarily translate into longer-term growth. For example, employment growth was strong in Mining from 1999 to 2000 (7.5%) but weaker over the longer-term of 1995 to 2000 (1.1%). The contrast of the short term versus long term demonstrates the sometimes volatile nature of Wyoming’s economy.

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