I'm getting my BS in Finance, and I was looking through BLS statistics when I realized that they have an incredibly detailed page for every occupation that includes charts, maps, tables, statistics. It seems like an invaluable resource when considering where I (Or anybody else) might want to live after college - for example where the best job markets are in terms of how much people get paid, and how much competition there is to find employment. I was wondering if other people had parsed through these in detail, because I don't full understand how they all work.
I decided to use just one facet of financial work as an example: Financial Analysts
So for example, the median salary in the field is $81,760. I'm guessing that's pre-tax, and also inclusive of everybody in the field, regardless of the length of time or level of education they have.
The first map shows the states that have the highest raw number of people working in the field.
The second map shows the location quotient, which I really don't understand. Is a low location quotient good, or high? Or is number irrelevant without additional information? As far as I understood it, LQ was the number of times the national average concentration, that financial analyst employment had in the state. For example, CA has between 1.25 and 2.5 times the normal national concentration? Am I understanding it correctly?
At the end of the day, LQ does not actually display any information about the likelihood of getting a job in the area in question right?
Then the third map shows the highest mean wages for these industries by state. Obviously, this has to be balanced against the cost of living, which is particularly high in NYC, Boston, and SF Bay area/Silicon Valley.
I know it's a complicated question, but there's so much data in the BLS pages that I feel like a lot of people could benefit from knowing how they work!