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The PayScale Index, Updated: Wages Down for Q2, STEM Salaries Slowing

The latest update to The PayScale Index, which measures the change in pay for all employed US workers, showed an overall decline in wages of -0.5 percent for the second quarter. This was greater than PayScale's prediction of a -0.1 percent decline. Annual wage growth was +0.3 percent. But not every metro area and industry took an equal hit. STEM-focused jobs, for example, once again saw an even bigger wage slowdown in Q2, despite constant news about growth in tech companies.

The latest update to The PayScale Index, which measures the change in pay for all employed US workers, showed an overall decline in wages of -0.5 percent for the second quarter. This was greater than PayScale’s prediction of a -0.1 percent decline. Annual wage growth was +0.3 percent. But not every metro area and industry took an equal hit. STEM-focused jobs, for example, once again saw an even bigger wage slowdown in Q2, despite constant news about growth in tech companies.

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Pay for science and biotech jobs declined by -1.1 percent last quarter, tied only with legal jobs for worst quarterly wage growth by industry. For the second quarter in a row, wages for IT jobs fell (-0.4 percent for Q2).

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Metro areas with a high concentration of STEM jobs were also affected, showing smaller than usual or even negative wage growth. San Francisco, Seattle, and Boston all showed quarterly growth of only +0.2 percent, and San Diego‘s wages declined -0.6 percent.

Mining, Oil, and Gas Exploration rebounded last quarter, growing +1.1 percent in Q2 after a Q3 decline of -1.3 percent, but wages in Houston still declined -0.9 percent.

After Mining, the industry with the second highest growth for the quarter was Arts, Recreation, and Entertainment, which saw wages increase by +0.7 percent, thanks to increased consumer spending.

The PayScale Index forecasts a 0.2 percent increase in wages in Q3, and an annual wage growth of 0.4 percent.

Annual Trends in Compensation for National (US)

National (US)

National (US) Forecast

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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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