New Jersey Has Therapists, Hawaii Has Tour Guides. Find Out the Unusually Popular Job in Your State.
by Kate Scanlon, Heritage Foundation Daily Signal November 3, 2014
What job is most heavily concentrated in your state?
A new map from Business Insider uses the newly released May 2013 Occupational Employment Statistics to illustrate “the most over-represented job in each state.” Each of the jobs depicted has a higher per-capita rate in the individual state than in the rest of the nation.
For example, Hawaii has a high proportion of tour guides, New Jersey has a great deal of marriage and family therapists, and West Virginia and Kentucky each have a high concentration of miners.
According to Business Insider, the map does not show the most common job in each state, but rather the job with the highest “location quotient,” or jobs that are “disproportionately concentrated in each state.”
A “location quotient” is calculated by comparing the number of people employed in a specific job to the number of total employed people in the state: “For example, in New York, there are about 7,180 fashion designers, out of a total of 8,635,400 employed people. So fashion designers account for about 8.3 out of every 10,000 jobs in New York.”
The result, 8.3, is then divided by 1.3, the national rate, which equals 6.4. “That is, there are about 6.4 times as many fashion designers per 10,000 total employed people in New York as in the U.S. as a whole,” reports Business Insider.
Business Insider said a map of the most common job in each state would be “boring,” as the most common job in the country–retail salesperson–would top the list in 42 states.
According to James Sherk, a senior policy analyst in labor economics at The Heritage Foundation:
This chart illustrates the fact that comparative advantage, economies of scale and division of labor operate on a national scale. Many businesses and workers with specialized skills congregate together–the fashion industry in New York, auto manufacturing in the Midwest. And in some areas of the country workers are relatively more in particular jobs than they would be elsewhere–like energy development in Texas and Wyoming, or tourism in Florida–so more employees work in those fields.