The Oregon Coast offers a physical escape from the ordinary, but it has not escaped the state’s descent into recession, as can be seen in Lincoln County. The county’s tourism-dominated economy, concentrated in Newport and Lincoln City, lost 720 jobs from January 2008 through January 2009, nearly 4% of its payroll employment. The heaviest losses were in leisure and hospitality (-480 jobs) as established businesses, such as Tups Bar and Grill and the Kernville Steakhouse, closed. In addition, professional and business services shed 80 jobs and retail trade cut 110 positions. Not all sectors lost jobs; private educational and health services and the always-fluctuating food manufacturing industry added jobs over the past year. However, the county’s many job losses led to an increase in Lincoln County’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate — from 5.5% in January 2008 to 9.6% in January 2009 — while the county’s number of unemployed swelled by more than 1,100 people.
— ERIK KNODER
WorkSource Oregon regional economist
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