Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Oregon’s Labor Market Largely Unchanged in May

Oregon’s unemployment rate was 5.3 percent in May, little changed from April’s 5.2 percent. This kept the state’s rate close to the national level, as the U.S. unemployment rate was 5.5 in May and 5.4 percent in April.

Employment growth paused in May, posting a decline of 1,400, the first monthly drop since September 2012. But this one-month decline is not an indicator of continued job losses. Despite the decline, employment was still up substantially over the year. Jobs have increased by 50,500, or 2.9 percent, since May 2014.

Real wages are growing. With Oregon’s unemployment rate dropping close to historic lows, wage gains reflected a tightening labor market. Average hourly earnings increased 2.2 percent over the year for Oregon’s private-sector employees. These gains were above the rate of consumer price inflation.

Read the full release here: Oregon Employment Department Press Release.

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