"Workers in the West Texas city in 2012 earned an average of $91,200, including wages and benefits, new data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis show.
The U.S. average was $56,900 and the Houston average was $71,600, said Bill Gilmer, director of the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston, who recently crunched the bureau's data to come up with the comparisons.
Gilmer noted that the high wages in Midland reflect its relatively small population of at least 114,000, and its remote location.
"It's very difficult to attract labor there," Gilmer said. "When incomes rise in the oil sector, they just pull the entire wage pool up with them.""
"managers of energy companies would come in for lunch and give their business cards to their servers. The next day, the server would report to the oil field instead of the restaurant."
"a real estate developer from El Paso who got the idea of taking a crew to Midland to build houses. The crew members were immediately offered jobs by oil companies scouting workers with construction and other skills."
"Employees in the Houston area who work in the drilling and exploration end of the energy industry earned an average of $302,900 in 2012. (Local wages and benefits still haven't recovered from the 2008 high of $328,500.)"