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Central Oregon sees more job losses in December; unemployment rates rise

Oregon Employment Dept.

But all 3 counties' job counts still up from a year ago, regional economist says

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Seasonally adjusted unemployment rates rose across Central Oregon and throughout the state in December, continuing a five-month trend, the Oregon Employment Department reported Tuesday.

December job losses were concentrated in retail trade and accommodation and food services, according to Regional Economist Dallas Fridley. Here's his report:

Crook County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose by 0.3 percentage point in December to 6.0%. The unemployment rate is 1.3 percentage point above the record low set before the pandemic, when it was 4.7%.

Crook County cut 100 nonfarm jobs in December, falling to 7,260. Employment levels in Crook County are up 11.6% from pre-pandemic levels (+770 jobs).

The county added 220 jobs in the last year (+3.1%). Crook County’s rate of job growth remains among the fastest of Oregon’s 36 counties over the past year. Job gains remain concentrated in information (+80 jobs), professional and business services (+40), and manufacturing (+40).

Deschutes County (Bend-Redmond MSA): The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 4.4% in December from a revised 4.1% in November. The unemployment rate in December remains 1.1 percentage points above its record low of 3.3% before the onset of the pandemic.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that Deschutes County lost 330 jobs in December, falling to 90,510. Retail trade cut 180 jobs in December, dropping its total to 11,480. Accommodation and food services cut 80 jobs in December – however, the leisure and hospitality group rose by 100 jobs with the return of the winter recreational season.

Manufacturing (-50); professional and business services (-40); and education and health services (-40) also lost jobs in December.  Local government cut 110 jobs in December and federal government shed 140. December seasonally adjusted employment exceeded pre-pandemic levels by 2,310 jobs or 2.6%.

Total nonfarm employment expanded by 2.3% (+2,010 jobs) from December 2021. Leisure and hospitality led private industry with an over-the-year gain of 850 jobs (+6.9%). Education and health services also expanded, adding 560 jobs (+3.7%). Retail trade cut 510 jobs (-4.3%), falling to 11,480, and manufacturing lost 130 jobs, dropping to 5,950. Local government rose by 710 jobs or 9.4%.

Jefferson County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose by 0.2 percentage point to 5.9% in December. The unemployment rate was 4.4% in December 2019 through January 2020, before the first impacts from COVID-19.

Total nonfarm employment fell by 60 in December, with government cutting 30 and private industry shedding 30 jobs. Leisure and hospitality cut 20 jobs and Indian tribal government lost 30. Jefferson County has fallen 10 jobs below its pre-pandemic employment level (-0.1%).

The rate of job growth is slowing in Jefferson County, with total nonfarm employment up 100 jobs over the past year (+1.5%). Job gains were concentrated in wood product manufacturing (+50 jobs), retail trade (+30 jobs), and education and health services (+30). Leisure and hospitality cut 10 jobs over the year, falling to 640 (-3.0%).

Next Press Releases

The Oregon Employment Department plans to release the January 2023 county and metropolitan area unemployment rates and statewide unemployment rate and employment survey data on March 7th .

Article Topic Follows: Business

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