Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor 14 Jun 2017 Viewed 861 Times Viewed by 645 people

The latest edition of the Glassdoor Local Pay Reports reveals a surprising trend in May: median U.S. base pay growth slowed to 2.1 percent year over year to $51,159 per year, according to salaries reported online to Glassdoor.


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While a single month doesn’t constitute a trend, this slowing pace of pay growth marks the fourth consecutive monthly decline we’ve seen. Median pay growth peaked at 3.1 percent year over year in January, but has fallen each month since — despite a strong U.S. economy edging closer to full employment.

 

Interestingly, we’re seeing a similar trend in the monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) jobs report. In past research, we’ve found the Glassdoor Local Pay Reports to be closely correlated with official BLS wage growth (about a +0.74 correlation).

 

Needless to say, with millions of U.S. job openings and a 4.4 percent unemployment rate, today’s lackluster wage growth remains a puzzle for many economists — most of whom expect to see wages accelerating thanks to today’s red-hot labor market.


Pay Gains by Metro

Among the ten metros we track, average pay growth was fastest in Los Angeles (up 2.6 percent, to $59,371 per year), followed by New York City (up 2.3 percent, to $60,639 per year) and San Francisco (up 2.3 percent, to $67,352 per year).

 

So far in 2017, Los Angeles has led the pack in terms of pay growth, rising an average of 3.8 percent year over year during the first five months of 2017. That’s a trend that’s helping push home prices in Los Angeles to record levels.

 

The slowest average pay growth in May was in Houston (up 0.4 percent, to $54,182 per year). That metro has been hit hard by low energy prices, and has lagged behind U.S. average pay growth for 17 of the past 18 months. The second slowest pay growth in May was in Philadelphia (up 0.5 percent, to $53,818 per year).

 

Jobs with the Fastest Pay Growth

Surprisingly, not a single IT job made this list. The top ten jobs with the fastest wage growth in May, compared to a year ago were recruiter, customer service manager, restaurant cook, warehouse associates, bank teller, maintenance worker, store manager, cashier, sales representative and registered nurse.

With the economy near full employment, employers are relying more on passive job candidates, putting recruiters in high demand.

 

Lowest Pay-Growth Jobs

Among the top ten lowest pay growth jobs a few IT related positions included:

 

Job Title

Median Base Pay

YoY % Growth

Java Developer

$71,359

-1.9%

Web Developer

$63,355

-0.2%

Web Designer

$48,934

0.5%

 

Highest Paying Jobs

Jobs with the highest pay growth aren’t always the ones with the highest overall earning potential. IT positions included in the top ten were:

 

Job Title

Median Base Pay

YoY % Growth

Data Scientist

$94,859

2.2%

Software Engineer

$86,462

3.6%

 

Lowest Paying Jobs

Fortunately, this category did not include any IT related jobs.

 

All Technology highest and lowest pay-growth jobs include:

 

                                                Median Base Pay    YoY

Software Engineer

$ 86,462

 

3.6%

Programmer Analyst

$ 68,174

 

3.9%

Web Developer

$ 63,355

 

-0.2%

Data Scientist

$ 94,859

 

2.2%

Data Analyst

$ 58,360

 

2.5%

Java Developer

$ 71,359

 

-1.9%

Web Designer

$ 48,934

 

0.5%

 

How Does it Work?

Glassdoor, Local Pay Reports incorporate millions of salaries directly collected from U.S. workers by Glassdoor and apply a proprietary machine-learning algorithm to estimate near-real-time trends in local pay for ten U.S. metros and the nation as a whole. All year-over-year estimates for median salary growth are based on 3-month moving averages.



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