Oregon's job growth continued for a sixth consecutive month in August and picked up steam with the addition of 8,800 payroll jobs over the month. August also marked the 25th consecutive month of year-over-year job gains statewide. In other words, in every month since August 2010, Oregon had more jobs than it did during the the same month of the previous year. Prior to August 2010, the state experienced 27 consecutive months where employment fell below the level one year prior.
In August, Oregon's private-sector employment grew by 9,200 jobs, while government employment fell by 400 jobs. Industries with the largest monthly job gains include manufacturing (+2,600), professional and business services (+1,800), and leisure and hospitality (+1,300). No private-sector industries posted job losses over the month.
Despite the positive employment gains, Oregon's unemployment rate ticked up slightly in August to 8.9 percent from the July rate of 8.7 percent. The Oregon Employment Department has data on the reasons why unemployed Oregonians are jobless. Although the number of those who are unemployed due to layoff or job loss has fallen from recessionary levels, the August 2012 number is still more than twice the level seen before the recession. Oregon has also experienced an upward trend in the number of entrants to the labor force since May 2008.
Elevated numbers of laid off workers and labor force entrants can -- among other things -- contribute to keeping the unemployment rate high.
More details on Oregon's August employment situation are available in the full news release.