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Payroll numbers decline in August

September 13, 2017

Oregon Payrolls Dropped 9,500 Jobs in August

Via Oregon Workforce and Economic Information
In August, Oregon’s nonfarm payroll employment dropped by 9,500 jobs, following a revised gain of 7,400 in July. This was the first seasonally adjusted decline in seven months.

Oregon’s unemployment rate rose to 4.1 percent in August from 3.8 percent in July. The rate remained near its all-time low of 3.6 percent, reached this May.

The August jobs report indicates that Oregon’s over-the-year job growth, while strong, has slowed. Between August 2016 and August 2017, payroll employment expanded by 44,600 jobs, or 2.4 percent. This is a reduction from the 3.1 percent job-growth rate seen through July.

The decline in August was concentrated in four of the 14 broad industry groups: leisure and hospitality (-3,600 jobs); government (-3,200); financial activities (-1,300); and wholesale trade (‑1,300). None of the major industries added more than 400 jobs.

The drop in leisure and hospitality came on the heels of unusually strong hiring in June and July. Similarly, the August government job loss offset the robust hiring in the spring and early summer.

“August’s job losses were an unusually sharp departure from months of very large job gains,” said Nick Beleiciks, Oregon’s state employment economist. “But looking past recent gains and losses, Oregon’s over-the-year job growth continues to be very good.” More details on this month’s employment estimates and unemployment figures can be found in Nick’s monthly interview, and in the Employment Department’s full news release.

These preliminary estimates of jobs and other labor force data are produced in cooperation with the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, are based largely on a survey of businesses and a survey of households, and are subject to later revision.

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