September 16 2019

Wage Growth in Albany and Saratoga Counties

Both Albany and Saratoga counties are regularly outperforming the majority of large U.S. counties when it comes to the growth of average weekly wages, according to a Center for Economic Growth Analysis of new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Wage Growth Performance

In Q1 2019, Albany County’s average annual weekly wage was $1,142, up 3 percent from a year earlier. During the same period, Saratoga County’s annual weekly wage rose 3.7 percent to $1,029. Based on their annual weekly wage growth rates, Albany County ranked 136th among the nation’s 356 large counties with employment levels of 75,000 or greater, and Saratoga County ranked 81st.

Historical Trends

In 13 of the past 20 months, Capital Region’s two large employment counties ranked higher than more than half of the 356 counties for year-over-year average weekly wake growth. In the last five years, Albany County’s strongest ranking was fifth in Q2 2016 and Saratoga County’s was 13th in Q2 2015.

Top Subsectors for Wage Growth

In both Albany and Saratoga counties, manufacturing played a significant role in the higher wages over the year. According average monthly wage data from the New York State Department of Labor, the top five subsectors driving this wage growth in the region’s two large counties in Q1 2019 were:

Albany County

Industry: Average Monthly Wage (Y/Y % Change)

  1. Machinery Manufacturing: $23,736 (14.2%)
  2. Telecommunications: $24,728 (14.1%)
  3. Credit Intermediation & Related Activity : $24,811 (14.1%)
  4. Air Transportation: $13,632 (13.9%)
  5. Private Households: $8,593 (13.6%)

Saratoga County

Industry: Average Monthly Wage (Y/Y % Change)

  1. Food Manufacturing: 8,245 (27.4%)
  2. Sporting Goods/Hobby/Book/Music Stores: $6,031 (21.3%)
  3. Electrical Equipment and Appliances, and Component Manufacturing: $14,145 (16.9%)
  4. Transit and Ground Passenger Transport: $6,234 (14.8%)
  5. Textile Product Mills: $13,215 (12.2%)

CEG Activities

To help Capital Region workers enhance their skills and earning capacity, CEG has launched or supported the following programs:

Manufacturing Technology Pathways Project: Hudson Valley Community College’s new short-term, stackable credential training program, or “boot camp,” supported by part of a $250,000 KeyBank Foundation grant administered by CEG;

Certified Production Technician Program: A certificate course at SUNY Schenectady County Community College, supported by part of a $250,000 KeyBank Foundation grant administered by CEG.

Manufacturing Intermediary Apprenticeship Program (MIAP): A CEG program, in partnership with the Manufacturers Association of Central New York (MACNY), to assist local manufacturers in training incumbent workers for high-skill trades.

Software Developer Apprenticeship Program: A CEG program, in partnership with SUNY Schenectady County Community College and Albany Can Code, Inc., that provides software developer apprentices with 1,000 to 2,000 hours of on-the-job training and 144 hours of related instruction.

Business Growth Solutions (BGS): As a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) center, CEG’s BGS unit can help manufacturers obtain grants for employee training initiatives.

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