Employment

Oregon Employment Forecast: Slow and Stable

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 31, 2019

Entering its eleventh year, the U.S. economic expansion is now the longest in recorded history. Growth slowed in 2019, and the burning question is why? Economic weakness – foretelling a recession – or simply what one might expect in such a mature expansion?

The answer likely lies somewhere in between. Business investment has been weak to nonexistent over the past year. The trade war, tariffs,

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November 2019 Employment and Unemployment in Oregon’s Counties

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 24, 2019

Benton County had Oregon’s lowest seasonally adjusted unemployment rate at 3.1 percent in November 2019. Other counties with some of the lowest unemployment rates in November included Washington (3.2%), Hood River (3.3%), and Multnomah (3.4%). These four counties had unemployment rates below the national rate of 3.5 percent. Nine of Oregon’s counties had unemployment rates at or below the

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Oregon General Merchandise Stores – Surviving the “Retail Apocalypse”

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 20, 2019

Retail market analysts love talking about the retail apocalypse, i.e. the imminent death of brick and mortar stores thanks to the Internet and Amazon. However, retail trade is a large and diverse sector, and oversimplified predictions may not accurately portray some of its segments.

In 2018, retail trade employment reached 211,066 or about one out of 10 jobs in Oregon. After food and beverage

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Oregon’s Unemployment Rate Drops to 3.9 Percent in November

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 17, 2019

Oregon’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.9 percent in November, the lowest on comparable records dating back to 1976. The October unemployment rate was 4.0 percent, as revised from the originally reported figure of 4.1 percent. Oregon’s November rate was slightly above the U.S. rate of 3.5 percent. Oregon’s unemployment rate has been hovering at historical lows of near 4 percent for the past 37

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Unwrapping Holiday Hiring: From Bricks to Clicks

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 11, 2019

Retailers and package delivery companies rely on the holiday season to provide an end-of-year boost in sales that makes operating during the rest of the year worthwhile. Some businesses hire extra workers, often on a temporary basis, to get them through this busy time of year. In 2018, the number of jobs added by “holiday hiring” industries with strong holiday employment patterns was lower than

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Oregon Construction Employment at Record Highs

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | December 4, 2019

Oregon’s construction industry reached a record high number of jobs in recent months, employing an average of 108,000 during the 12 months ending with October 2019. The industry added jobs steadily and rapidly in recent years, following a prolonged slump in 2009 through 2012, when employment remained near 70,000 for several years after the last recession.

Looking back 30 years, clearly the

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October 2019 Employment and Unemployment in Oregon’s Counties

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | November 19, 2019

Benton County had Oregon’s lowest seasonally adjusted unemployment rate at 3.3 percent in October 2019. Other counties with some of the lowest unemployment rates in October included Hood River (3.4%), Washington (3.4%), and Multnomah (3.5%). These four counties had unemployment rates below the national rate of 3.6 percent. Ten of Oregon’s counties had unemployment rates at or below the statewide

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Oregon’s Unemployment Rate Has Stayed Near 4 Percent for Three Years

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | November 13, 2019

Oregon’s unemployment rate was 4.1 percent in September and October. The rate has been between 4.0 percent and 4.4 percent for an unprecedented 36 consecutive months dating back to November 2016. The U.S. unemployment rate ticked up from 3.5 percent in September to 3.6 percent in October.

Other measures of Oregon’s labor force also indicated a tight labor market in recent months. Fewer

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Employment Among Oregon’s Veteran’s

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | November 8, 2019

In 2018, the unemployment rate for veterans in Oregon was 4.8 percent, according to the Current Population Survey. Overall, Oregon’s unemployment rate was 4.2 percent in 2018. Across the U.S., veterans had a lower unemployment rate of 3.5 percent.

About 296,000 veterans lived in Oregon in 2018. More than half of veterans (162,000) were not in the labor force. This figure could be related to

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Oregon Employment Forecast: Solid Fundamentals, More Uncertainty

By Research Division of the Oregon Employment Department | November 5, 2019

The U.S. economic expansion turned 10 years old this summer, making it the longest expansion in recorded history. Locally, Oregon continues to add jobs and our unemployment rate remains at or near record lows. In addition, incomes are rising and initial claims for unemployment insurance (a measure of layoffs) are down. All told, the state’s economy continues to hit the sweet spot. How long will

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