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Central Oregon jobless rates hold generally steady in August


SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) -- For the second month in a row, seasonally adjusted unemployment rates across Central Oregon saw little to no change in August, with a slight increase in Crook County, the Oregon Employment Department reported Tuesday.

Here's their monthly report:

Crook County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased slightly over the month of August and is now 5.4%—in August of last year, it was 5.8%. The unemployment rate remains 0.9 percentage point above the record low set before the pandemic, when it was 4.5%

Crook County nonfarm employment remained unchanged in August, when typically the county gains jobs this time of year. Employment levels in Crook County are now 7.8% above pre-pandemic levels in February 2020 (+520 jobs).

The county lost 180 jobs in the last year (-2.4%), registering a negative year-over-year growth rate. Job losses were concentrated in construction (-240 jobs), professional and business services (-70 jobs), and leisure and hospitality (-60 jobs). These losses were moderately offset by job gains concentrated in private education and health services (+120 jobs), retail trade (+60 jobs), and other services (+50 jobs).

Deschutes County (Bend-Redmond MSA): The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate saw no change over the month of July and remains at 3.7% as of August. The unemployment rate in August remains 0.3 percentage point above its record low of 3.4% before the onset of the pandemic.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that Deschutes County gained 440 jobs (+0.5%) in August, and total nonfarm employment is now 92,950. Employment levels remain around 3,580 jobs (+4.0%) above February 2020 levels, before the onset of the pandemic.                                                                                                     

Total nonfarm employment expanded by 0.9% (+820 jobs) from August 2022. Private education and health services led private industry growth with an over-the-year gain of 840 jobs (+5.5%). Other notable gains were in government (+520 jobs); mining, logging, and construction (+160 jobs); other services (+120 jobs); and information (+70 jobs). Over-the-year losses occurred primarily in financial activities (-330 jobs); trade, transportation, and utilities (-290 jobs); leisure and hospitality (-140 jobs); and manufacturing (-110 jobs).

Jefferson County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady over the month of August and remains at 4.5%. The unemployment rate was 4.4% from October 2019 to December 2019, shortly before the first impacts from COVID-19.

Total nonfarm employment declined by 10 jobs in August (-0.2%), smaller losses than normal for this time of year. Employment gains were concentrated in private education and health services (+10 jobs) and trade, transportation, and utilities (+10 jobs), while job losses were concentrated in leisure and hospitality (-20 jobs) and government (-10 jobs). All other industries registered little to no change over the month. Total nonfarm seasonally adjusted employment is now 100 jobs below its pre-pandemic employment level (-1.5%).

Jefferson County’s total nonfarm employment increased by 210 over the past year (3.3%). Job gains were concentrated in the public sector (+210 jobs), other services (+40 jobs), and private education and health services (+30 jobs). Job losses were concentrated in retail trade (-40 jobs); construction (-30 jobs); and manufacturing (-20 jobs).

Next Press Releases

The Oregon Employment Department plans to release the September county and metropolitan area unemployment rates on Tuesday, Oct. 24, and the statewide unemployment rate and employment survey data for September on Wednesday, Oct. 18.

Article Topic Follows: Business

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Barney Lerten

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