Utah County ranks No. 4 nationally for job creation, but its average wages are low

Utah County ranked No. 4 last year among the nation’s 350 largest counties for creating new jobs, according to federal statistics released Wednesday.

The home of Silicon Slopes enjoyed a job growth rate of 4.5% in 2018, triple the national rate of 1.5%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Among other large counties in Utah, the job creation rate was 2.8% in Salt Lake County (ranking No. 32 nationally); 2.6% in Davis County (No. 41) and 2.2% in Weber County (No. 60).

Midland County, Texas, had the nation’s top job growth rate at 10%. Bay County, Fla., home of Panama City, had the nation’s worst rate, a loss of 5.6%.

Utah County also was relatively high — at No. 22 among the 350 largest counties — for the rate of increase in average weekly wages, at 6.1%.

But the average weekly wage there of $943 is still 18 percent lower than the national average of $1,144.

In the other Wasatch Front counties, Salt Lake County’s weekly average wage increased by 3.5% to $1,094 (ranking No. 128); Davis County increased by 2.8% to $931 (No. 194); and Weber County increased by 3.8% to $838 (No. 101).

Tippecanoe County, Ind., home of Lafayette and Purdue University, had the nation’s top wage growth rate at 15.1%. The nation’s worst rate was in Washington County, Pa., near Pittsburgh, which saw a decrease of 6.6%.