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|Wednesday, February 01, 2006|
By Brandon Sawyer
Oregon’s unemployment rate — a persistent sore spot for politicians and business groups — was the nation’s highest or second-highest state rate for 43 consecutive months (April 2001 to October 2004) according to Art Ayre, state employment economist. frictional, cyclical and structural. Ayre says all three have converged to drive up Oregon’s rate during and after the recession of 2001. The most common component, frictional, includes people who are attempting to change careers, who have recently moved to the state without a job, who live in isolated rural areas Lately, the rate has trended down toward what some economists have viewed as an “optimal rate,” about 5.5%. At 5.7% in December, it remains nearly a percentage point above the national rate of 4.9%. As of November, it is the eighth-highest rate among the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Economists identify three unemployment components — where job searches take longer and those who work in highly seasonal industries such as agriculture and food processing. The state has a relatively large proportion of people meeting such criteria. Oregon having the second-highest state-mandated minimum wage in the nation could also contribute to a frictional effect, both by drawing more job candidates and discouraging additional hiring. Cyclical unemployment may weigh heavy on Oregon because some of its major industries, such as wood products and other durable goods, expand and contract faster than others in response to economic shifts. The downturn in high-tech industries about fi ve years ago severely tarnished the state’s employment picture. High tech will probably not recover to where it was in the late ’90s, says Ayre, but it should remain flat over the next 10 years. However, select industries, such as software publishing, seem to be making a comeback. The fi nal component, structural unemployment, includes the loss of jobs to cheaper labor overseas and the automation of industries that previously provided steady jobs. Oregon suffered such structural changes in its timber industry during the early ’80s, and like much of the United States, it has lost a signifi cant number of manufacturing jobs during the past decade. Regulation of the fishing industry and the rise in electricity prices for aluminum plants has also displaced workers in the region.
How it’s calculated
The U.S. Census Bureau conducts the monthly Current Population Survey, which uses probability sampling to estimate national numbers of employed and unemployed persons. State-level data are combined with a time series model to produce state estimates. The survey categorizes respondents as follows:
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
BY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER
Tom Cox interviews Steve Balzac, author of "Organizational Psychology for Managers."
Tuesday, July 08, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
The New Yorker recently published a sharply worded critique of “disruptive innovation,” one of the most widely cited theories in the business world today. The article raises questions about the descriptive value of disruption and innovation — whether the terms are mere buzzwords or actually explain today's extraordinarily complex and fast changing business environment.
Update: We caught up with Portland's Thomas Thurston, who shared his data driven take on the disruption controversy.
Friday, August 15, 2014
In this week's poll, we asked readers: "Who should pay for the troubled Cover Oregon website?" Here are the results.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
BY ERIC FRUTS | OB BLOGGER
Last year, the housing market in Oregon—and the U.S. as a whole—was blasting off. The Case-Shiller index of home prices ended the year 13% higher than at the beginning of the year. But, was last year a blip, or a trend?
Tuesday, July 01, 2014
BY HANNAH WALLACE | OB BLOGGER
Demand for organic food continues to soar: Last year, sales of organic food rose to $32.3 billion — up 10% from 2012. In Oregon, organic produce wholesaler Organically Grown Co. has been championing organic growing methods for four decades.
Thursday, July 24, 2014
BY CLIFF HOCKLEY | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
With the increasing retirements of Baby Boomers, a massive real estate shift has created a significant increase in demand for NNN properties. The result? Increased demand has triggered higher prices and lower yields.
Wednesday, August 06, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
Portland startup Green Endeavor strikes gold, inking a partnership with Underwriters Laboratories, an Illinois-based consulting and certification company with offices in 46 countries.
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Vigilant enters a New Year with a new president.
How George Fox has become one of Oregon's largest private universities.
Forest Grove sees growth in the burgeoning food and beverage scene.
Lane Powell Shareholder William T. Patton has been appointed to the board of directors for Cascade AIDS Project, an organization that provides educational services and outreach to thousands of Oregonians living with HIV/AIDS.
Fifty-one Lane Powell lawyers were recently selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® (Best Lawyers) 2015; of those selected, 23 lawyers are from the Firm’s office in Portland, Oregon.
Barran Liebman is proud to announce that Andrew Schpak, a Partner of the firm, has been named Chair of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division for the 2014-2015 bar year.