July 15, 2020 Comments Off on Oregon Claws Back Jobs, Outlook Still Troubling Views: 319 Portland, Seattle & Pacific Northwest News, Top Seattle

Oregon Claws Back Jobs, Outlook Still Troubling

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Oregonians started to return to work in June as the state’s economy reopened and that drove the jobless rate down by 3% to 11.2%. A new report from the Oregon Employment Dept. shows employers added nearly 57,000 jobs last month and followed May’s gain of 26,100 jobs.

While the state has recovered roughly a third of the jobs lost since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, there were still 243,000 workers without jobs in June. The unemployment rate still lingers at a historically high level, and since the health threat is proving difficult to shake, the state’s outlook remains cloudy.

The number of new jobless claims being filed in Oregon reflects that concern. It is running at twice the rate it was before the pandemic hit. There were 8,600 new jobless claims filed the week ending July 4. Prior to the coronavirus period, Oregon was averaging 4,700 new jobless claims per week.

In May and June, the leisure and hospitality sector added 47,600 jobs, though it still is down 73,000 jobs from where it was in early March. The healthcare sector has clawed back nearly 60% of the pandemic induced lost jobs.

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