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August 09, 2005
Census Bureau Lists Best-Paying Counties

New York County in New York, which contains Manhattan, has the highest payroll per employee among the nation’s largest counties, while Los Angeles County, California, has the highest number of businesses, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

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The Bureau released the data as an update to its 2003 County Business Patterns report (linked below), which contains a variety of information on businesses in more than 1,000 industries and more than 3,100 counties. That includes data on the number of establishments, number of employees, and quarterly and annual payroll, based on the 2002 North American Industry Classification System.

Among the findings in the update:

  • Nation-leading Los Angeles County, California, had 235,085 businesses, with Cook, Illinois, second at 127,727, followed by New York, New York, at 103,313.
  • Los Angeles County businesses employed 3.8 million workers, with annual payrolls totaling $147.4 billion. Cook County had 2.4 million workers, with a payroll of $102.2 billion, while New York’s 2 million employees earned $147.7 billion in 2003.
  • Of the nation’s most populous counties, New York, New York, had the highest average annual payroll per employee at $73,032, while the average for workers in Riverside, California, was $28,809.
  • A sampling of the 50 most populous counties across the United States shows average payrolls per employee at $45,282 in Hennepin, Minnesota; $35,835 in Franklin, Ohio; $32,009 in Clark, Nevada, and $30,452 in Bexar, Texas.

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