Large County Employment, Third Quarter 2023


Employment in large counties, including Sedgwick County and others of interest.

The source of this data is the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an agency of the United States Department of Labor.

This data covers the 364 largest counties. They comprise about 70 percent of the United States population.

The nearby chart 5b shows employment for a quarter, the change from the previous quarter, and the change from the same quarter one year ago. This example shows data for the third quarter of 2023. (The third quarter is the months of July, August, and September.) The counties shown in this chart are of particular interest to Wichita and Sedgwick County. Some are nearby, while some are counties holding cities Wichita leaders visited as part of a city-to-city visit program. (Click charts for larger versions.)

For all large counties, employment fell by 0.3 percent in the third quarter of 2023, and rose by 1.8 percent over the year.

Chart 5a is similar to 5b but covers a variable time span. The nearby example holds the same counties as above for starting with the first quarter of 2011. It presents counties in order of percent change over this period.

Two examples of Chart 1b show that over the past year, Sedgwick County has performed well in job creation, but over a longer time period, lags behind its peers.

I asked ChatGPT about the data for this group of counties, starting with first quarter 2021. This table holds data for the same counties that appear in the above charts.

For the latest quarter of 2023 Q3, comparing Sedgwick County, KS, with the aggregate of all reported counties reveals several insights:

  • Sedgwick County reported employment (Emp) at 262,700, below the average employment across all counties (392,242). The employment year-over-year percentage change for Sedgwick was 2.3772%, slightly above the average of 1.8392% for all counties, indicating a relatively stronger growth in employment for Sedgwick County.

  • Sedgwick County had 14,500 establishments, which is below the average (25,010.53) for all counties. However, the establishments year-over-year percentage change in Sedgwick was 5.0725%, significantly higher than the average of 3.7067% for all counties, suggesting a robust growth in the number of establishments in Sedgwick compared to the broader group.

  • The average wage in Sedgwick County was reported at 1,088, which is below the average wage across all counties (1,269.89). The wage year-over-year percentage change in Sedgwick was 1.7774%, compared to the average of 0.1971% across all counties, indicating a notably stronger growth in wages for Sedgwick County.

  • Sedgwick County’s rankings in the context of employment growth and wage growth are relatively favorable. Specifically, its employment growth ranked 106th, indicating it is in the upper half of counties in terms of employment growth rate. Its wage growth rank was even more competitive at 40th, highlighting a strong performance in increasing wages compared to other counties.

In summary, while Sedgwick County may have lower absolute numbers in employment and establishments compared to the average across all counties, its year-over-year percentage changes for employment, establishments, and especially wages indicate stronger growth dynamics. This suggests that Sedgwick County is performing well in terms of economic development and growth in wages, despite having a smaller scale in absolute terms compared to the larger group average.

To learn more about this data and use this visualization, click on Visualization: Large County Employment, Establishments, and Wages.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.