Sponsored by Oregon Business

"Real" jobless figure is twice as bad: 13.3%

| Print |  Email
Archives - January 2009
Thursday, January 01, 2009
STATEWIDE The growing unemployment rate in Oregon is distressing, but the “real” unemployment rate is actually nearly twice as bleak.


Officially, the state unemployment rate in October was 7.3%. Unofficially, the rate was 13.3% if you count other groups usually not included in the Oregon Employment Department’s monthly calculation.

“It’s a little bit of another perspective on the labor force,” says state labor economist Art Ayre.

The conventional definition of the “unemployment rate” only counts those out of work but actively searching for a job. The 13.3% rate includes people who want work but have given up looking, those who want work but haven’t searched for a job in the past four weeks, and people who have a part-time job but want to work full-time.

The figure is what some labor economists call the “real” unemployment rate, an alternative, and controversial, number that sometimes finds its way into the national dialogue on the most accurate indicators of unemployment and economic health.

Nationally, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics compiles and categorizes the rate as “labor underutilization,” economic jargon for describing people who don’t fall under the technical definition of unemployment.

Oregon’s official employment spiked to 8.1% in November, and the “real” rate will increase accordingly.  

“During certain periods when people are looking for a job, this number can increase rapidly,” Ayre says. “It’s another perspective to get a complete picture.”

JASON SHUFFLER


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


 

More Articles

100 Best: The Power of the Worker

March 2015
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR
AND AMY MILSHTEIN | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Technology is empowering people like never before and transforming how employees interact in the workplace. How can companies attract and keep staff engaged in this rapidly changing world?


Read more...

City announces plans for Portland summer-league baseball team

News
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
IMG 3888BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Baseball is returning to Portland and city officials are hoping economic opportunity comes with it.


Read more...

VIDEO: The 2015 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon

The Latest
Friday, February 27, 2015

videothumbVIDEO: 2015 100 Best Companies to work for in Oregon


Read more...

Car Talk

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

Everyone knows cell phones and driving are a lethal combination. The risk is especially high for teenage drivers, whose delusions of immortality pose such a threat to us all. Enforcement alas, remains feeble; more promising are pedagogical approaches aimed at getting people to focus on the road, not their devices.


Read more...

Meeting Facilities Perspective

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A conversation with Donna Earley, director of sales and marketing for the Salem Convention Center.


Read more...

Beyond Bodegas

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER

Five years in the making, the Portland Mercado — the city’s first Latino public market — will celebrate its grand opening April 11. A $3.5 million public-private partnership spearheaded by Hacienda CDC, the market will house 15 to 20 businesses in the food, retail and service sectors. It has some big-name funders, including the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and JPMorgan Chase. The project goals are equally ambitious: to improve cross-cultural understanding, alleviate poverty and spur community economic development. 


Read more...

Downtown flower shop readies for the Valentine's Day rush

The Latest
Monday, February 09, 2015
021015-giffords-thumbBY MEGHAN NOLT

VIDEO: Gifford's Flowers brings family approach to PSU-area shop.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS