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Central Oregon’s unemployment rates held steady in May, while job numbers rose

Oregon Employment Department

SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Seasonally adjusted unemployment rates remained unchanged in Central Oregon over the month of May, the Oregon Employment Department reported Tuesday. All three Central Oregon counties saw total nonfarm employment increase in May, while year-over-year, total nonfarm employment increased in Deschutes and Jefferson counties.

Crook County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate did not change over the month of May and remains 6.3%—in May of last year, it was 5.3%. The unemployment rate remains 1.8 percentage points above the record low set before the pandemic when it was 4.5%.

Crook County gained 80 jobs (+1.1%) in May, with most gains occurring in the public sector (+30 jobs) and most losses occurring in leisure and hospitality (-20 jobs). Employment levels in Crook County are now 7.8% above pre-pandemic levels in February 2020 (+520 jobs).

The county lost 230 jobs in the last year (-3.1%). Job losses were concentrated in construction (-180 jobs), information (-60 jobs), and government (-60 jobs). Marginal gains were concentrated in private education and health services (+40 jobs).

Deschutes County (Bend-Redmond MSA): The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.1%. May’s unemployment rate remains 0.7 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 1,010 jobs (+1.1%) from April to May. Most gains were concentrated in accommodation and food services (+500 jobs); followed by the public sector (+170 jobs); mining, logging, and construction (+130 jobs); and professional and business services (+90 jobs). Total nonfarm employment is now 94,690.                                                                                                               

Total nonfarm employment expanded by 0.1% (+110 jobs) from May 2023 to May 2024. Over the year, job gains were concentrated in private education and health services (+710 jobs). Other notable job gains took place in government (+190 jobs) and financial activities (+90 jobs). Over-the-year losses occurred in retail trade (-250 jobs); professional and business services (-220 jobs); manufacturing (-130 jobs); information (-100 jobs); and mining, logging, and construction (-90 jobs).

Jefferson County: The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate saw no change over the month of May, holding steady at 4.7%. The unemployment rate was 4.4% from October 2019 to December 2019, shortly before the first impacts from COVID-19.

Total nonfarm employment increased by 130 jobs in May (+1.9%). Private-sector job gains were concentrated in leisure and hospitality (+60 jobs), professional and business services (+20 jobs), and manufacturing (+20 jobs). Total nonfarm seasonally adjusted employment is now +0.3% (+20 jobs) above the pre-pandemic employment level.

Jefferson County’s total nonfarm employment increased by 30 over the past year (+0.4%). Job gains were concentrated in the public sector (+60 jobs); private education and health services (+40 jobs); leisure and hospitality (+30 jobs); and professional and business services (+20 jobs). Losses were concentrated in manufacturing (-100 jobs).

Next Press Releases

The Oregon Employment Department plans to release the June county and metropolitan area unemployment rates on Tuesday, July 23, and the statewide unemployment rate and employment survey data for June on Wednesday, July 17.

Article Topic Follows: Deschutes County

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