The unemployment rate in Douglas County ticked up slightly in January, while the rate across the state remained the same and the federal rate remained historically low, according to data released Tuesday by the Oregon Employment Department.
The county’s unemployment rate was 5.7% in January, compared with 5.6% in December. The January rate is up from 5.1% a year ago. Douglas County’s record low unemployment rate was set in October 2019 at 4.4%. The Oregon rate in January was 4.8%, and the U.S. rate was 3.4% — the lowest level in more than 50 years
The statewide rate of 4.8% in January matched the rates for October, November, and December 2022, the Employment Department said. The last time Oregon’s unemployment rate was higher than 4.8% was in July 2021, when it was 5.1%.
Douglas County payroll employment decreased by 60 jobs in January, after gains of 160 in December and 110 in November. Benchmark adjustments for 2022 show that annual average total payroll employment was 530 (1.4%) jobs higher than originally estimated. With the adjustment, the county has gained back 86% of the jobs lost in March and April 2020, at the onset of the COVID-19 crisis.
In the private-sector industries in January, there were seasonal losses in leisure and hospitality (-110); retail trade (-100); transportation, warehousing, and utilities (-100); and construction (-60). There were additional losses in professional and business services (-50) and manufacturing (-30).
Government dropped 50 jobs, consisting of the loss of 40 jobs in federal government and 10 in state government.
When comparing January 2023 with January 2022, total nonfarm employment increased by 330 jobs, or 0.9%. Large private-sector over-the-year gains were seen in private education and health services (250) and other services (160). There were relatively large losses in professional and business services (-210) and financial activities (-70).
Government gained 180 jobs over the year, consisting of a gain of 230 jobs in local government that was countered by a loss of 50 jobs in federal government.
Scott Carroll can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 541-957-4204. Or follow him on Twitter @scottcarroll15.
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