Census Bureau: 2019 County Business Patterns Now Available

Transportation and Warehousing led all business sectors with the largest rate of employment growth with an increase of 7.5% in the United States from 2018 to 2019, according to new U.S. Census Bureau economic statistics released today.

Overall, employment in this sector grew from 5.0 million in 2018 to 5.4 million in 2019. In addition, annual payroll in Transportation and Warehousing (NAICS 48-49) grew 7.9% from $262.5 billion in 2018 to $283.2 billion in 2019, and the number of establishments grew 2.2% from 244,800 in 2018 to 250,080 in 2019.

These statistics come from the 2019 County Business Patterns (CBP) series, which provides detailed annual information on the number of establishments, employment, and first quarter and annual payroll at the national, state, metropolitan/micropolitan statistical area, combined statistical area, county, and congressional district levels for 970 industries defined by the 2017 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

Highlights include:

  • First quarter payroll in the United States was up 4.9% from $1.8 trillion in 2018 to $1.9 trillion in 2019, and annual payroll was up 4.7% from $7.1 trillion in 2018 to $7.4 trillion in 2019.
  • The nation’s largest employment gains occurred in Texas (309,458 employees), California (293,160 employees), and Florida (190,431 employees) from 2018 to 2019. 
  • In 2019, the greatest number of employees in the United States was in Health Care and Social Assistance (NAICS 62), which rose 1.8% to 20.9 million employees working at 918,433 establishments. 
  • The largest percentage increases in employment among states occurred in Nevada (3.3%), Idaho (3.2%) and Texas (2.9%).
  • Among the top 50 U.S. counties with the most employees, the top three for employment growth in 2019 were:
    • San Francisco County, Calif., with an increase of 33,364 employees and a growth of 5.0%.
    • Clark County, Nev., with an increase of 35,927 employees and a growth of 4.1%.
    • Wake County, N.C., with an increase of 18,015 employees and a growth of 3.8%.

Tools for Accessing CBP

CBP data can be accessed using multiple tools available via the Census Bureau’s website, including data.census.govQuickFactsCensus Business BuilderAPI and My Congressional District.

About the Program

Since 1964, CBP statistics are based on data from employer establishments as represented on the Census Bureau’s Business Register, a database of all known single- and multi-establishment employer companies. The Business Register contains the most complete, current and consistent data for business establishments. The annual Report of Organization Survey and the quinquennial economic census provide individual establishment data for multi-establishment companies. Data for single-establishment companies are obtained from various Census Bureau surveys and programs, such as the economic census, Annual Survey of Manufactures, and from administrative record sources.

CBP covers most of the country’s economic activity. However, the statistics exclude data from self-employed individuals (i.e., non-employers); employees of private households; railroad employees; agricultural production employees; the Postal Service; pension, health, welfare and vacation funds; office of notaries, trusts, estates and agency accounts; and most government employees.

Statistics are provided by employment-size classes (e.g., number of establishments with fewer than five employees) and legal forms of organization, such as corporations and partnerships (available at the national and state levels). Definitional and coverage differences may affect the direct comparisons of economic census data and County Business Patterns statistics. See  program methodology for more details.

County Business Patterns statistics are also available for Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands at the state and county-equivalent levels.

Other Sources of Local Area Economic Data

The Census Bureau conducts an economic census every five years to provide a comprehensive and detailed profile of the U.S. economy, covering millions of businesses representing 950 industries and providing unique portraits of American industries and local communities.

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