The slight uptick in the unemployment rate was not a surprise. In recent years, the state has seen small increases in the unemployment rate during the summer months, as movers to Oregon, recent graduates, and students on summer break look for jobs. The influx of unemployed persons into the state's labor market was larger than expected in each of the last four summers, which led to temporary increases in the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate.
Oregon's 5.5 percent unemployment rate in June was significantly lower than 7.0 percent in June 2014.
After a flat month with no job gains or losses (as revised) in May, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated Oregon's employment growth at 2,300 jobs in June. Retail trade bounced back from its loss of 1,400 jobs in May with a gain of 3,100 jobs in June. Local government added 1,800 jobs in June.
Between June 2014 and June 2015 payroll employment grew by 52,100 jobs, or 3.0 percent. That's much faster than the national rate of 2.1 percent. Oregon's over-the-year job growth has consistently outpaced the nation's since 2013.
State Employment Economist Nick Beleiciks commented that "June’s low unemployment rate and continued job growth are signs that Oregon’s labor market is in great shape right now."
More information on Oregon's June labor force, unemployment rate, and job growth can be found in the full news release, or by watching today's video!