Tech employment jumps 26.3% in Federal Reserve’s Eighth District

by Jeff Della Rosa (JDellaRosa@nwabj.com) 40 views 

Employment in the technology sector rose more than 26% to 227,085, between 2010 and 2015, in the Eighth District of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Nationwide, employment in the sector rose 20.3%.

In a report, economist Charles Gascon and Evan Karson, both with the St. Louis Fed, calculated the growth in the tech sector nationally and within the district, which includes Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. They also broke down the growth by the four largest metropolitan statistical areas in the district: St. Louis, Memphis, Louisville and Little Rock.

The following seven industries were used to represent the tech sector: computer manufacturing, electronic shopping, software publishing, data processing, internet publishing, computer systems design and scientific research.

In the Eighth District, tech earnings rose 10.5%, between 2010 and 2015. Wages rose the most in Memphis, increasing 16.3% in the period.

In Benton and Washington counties, tech wages increased 15.6%, said Michael Pakko, chief economist and state economic forecaster for Arkansas Economic Development Institute at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Tech wages represented 2.1% of total wages in 2015, down from 2.4% in 2010.

Between 2010 and 2015, employment rose 28.1% to 3,031, from 2,366, Pakko said. Over the same period, the sector’s share of total employment rose to 1.7%, from 1.5%.

Little Rock’s and St. Louis’ tech sectors had the largest share of total employment, both at 2.9%. However, employment in Little Rock declined 6.1% to 7,531. Louisville saw the most employment growth, rising 52.4% to 12,485.

Nationwide, the San Jose, Calif., metropolitan statistical area had the largest concentration of tech workers at 21%, according to Gascon’s report. Tech workers in San Jose also earned the most, averaging $4,500 per week.

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