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Oregon adds 8,500 jobs in June; jobless rate steady

Widespread gains among major injuries

SALEM, Ore. - In June, Oregon's nonfarm payroll employment grew by 8,500 jobs, following a gain of 2,600 in May, the Oregon Employment Department reported Tuesday. The June increase was the largest gain since February 2016, when 9,600 jobs were added.

Gains were widespread among the major industries, with 11 of the 14 industries adding jobs. Leisure and hospitality added the most, increasing by 2,100 jobs. In addition, strong hiring occurred in construction (+1,600 jobs) and manufacturing (+1,400). Financial activities was the only major industry to cut substantially, as it shed 800 jobs.

Over the past 12 months, Oregon's payroll employment rose 47,300, or 2.6 percent. This rapid pace was an acceleration from earlier in the year when over-the-year growth was hovering around 2.0 percent.

Oregon's unemployment rate was little changed at 3.7 percent in June. The rate remained near its all time low of 3.6 percent reached in May. Oregon's rate was significantly below its year-ago rate of 5.1 percent in June 2016 and well below the U.S. unemployment rate of 4.4 percent in June 2017.

Other signs of a tight labor market in Oregon include fewer long-term unemployed and falling measures of labor underutilization.

The number of Oregonians who have been unemployed for more than six months dropped to 10,700 in June, the lowest on record dating back to 2002. In contrast, the long term unemployed reached a peak of more than 100,000 in 2010, during the aftermath of the Great Recession.

Meanwhile, U-6 -- the broadest measure of labor underutilization, which includes the unemployed, those who have stopped looking for work within the last year but still want a job, and those who are working part-time but would prefer to work full-time -- dropped to 7.4 percent in June.

This was by far Oregon's lowest U-6 since comparable records began in 2002, and was a continuation of its downward trend since reaching a peak of 21.1 percent in May 2009.

In recent months, Oregon's labor market tightened so rapidly that Oregon's U-6 dropped below the national U-6 of 8.6 percent in June.

Next Press Releases
The Oregon Employment Department plans to release the June county and metropolitan area unemployment rates on Tuesday, July 25th, and the next statewide unemployment rate and employment survey data for July on Tuesday, August 15th.

Notes:
All numbers in the above narrative are seasonally adjusted.

The Oregon Employment Department and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics work cooperatively to develop and publish monthly Oregon payroll employment and labor force data. The estimates of monthly job gains and losses are based on a survey of businesses. The estimates of unemployment are based on a survey of households and other sources.

The Oregon Employment Department publishes payroll employment estimates that are revised quarterly by using employment counts from employer unemployment insurance tax records. All department publications use this Official Oregon Series data unless noted otherwise. This month's release incorporates the October, November and December 2016 tax records data. The department continues to make the original nonfarm payroll employment series available; these data are produced by the BLS. 


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