Thursday, January 3, 2019

Oregon's Youth and Young Adult Labor Force Participation Trends

For more than two decades, the labor force participation rate (LFPR) - the percentage of the civilian non-institutionalized population that is either employed or unemployed - for Oregon's youth and young adult population has been on a general downward trend. The LFPR for people between the ages of 16 and 24 years dropped from a peak of 72.9 percent in 1996 to 54.2 in 2015, a considerable decline in workforce participation over that time period to the lowest annual percentage since comparable records began in 1978. Although the LFPR for this age group increased in 2016 to 54.9 percent and to 60.6 in 2017, the series remains at low levels relative to the years prior to 2000.

The LFPR for Oregon's youth (ages 16 to 19 years) declined more dramatically than for Oregon's young adults (ages 20 to 24 years). The LFPR for Oregon's young adults peaked in 1996 at 83.2 percent, and then generally declined to a record low of 71.0 percent in 2013. Having since increased to 74.4 percent in 2017, the LFPR for Oregon's young adults is higher than it was in 2013, although lower than it was two decades ago.

The LFPR for Oregon's youth peaked much earlier than for young adults, at 63.7 in 1989. Since reaching this peak in 1989, the LFPR for people ages 16 to 19 years has generally declined each year, falling by close to 30.0 percentage points from 1989 to a historical low of 33.5 percent in 2015. Like the LFPR for Oregon's young adults, the LFPR for ages 16 to 19 years has increased over the last few years to 40.4 percent in 2017. Despite the recent increase, the current LFPR remains well below the 1989 peak.

To learn more about the labor force participation rate of Oregon's youth and young adults, read the full article written by Local Area Unemployment Statistics Coordinator, Tracy Morrissette

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