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County unemployment holds steady as state’s lowest

Oregon’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose slightly in July, climbing by 0.1 percentage point to 6.9 percent. Compared with July 2013, Oregon’s unemployment rate fell by 0.9 percentage point over the year.

Hood River County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady in July at 5.2 percent, which was good enough to rank as Oregon’s lowest, just below Benton County’s 5.3 percent. Compared with July 2013, Hood River County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by 0.7 percentage point.

Wasco County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady in July at 6.1 percent, low enough to rank fifth in Oregon, tied with Clackamas, Multnomah and Sherman counties. Over the year, Wasco County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by 0.8 percentage point.

Hood River County rose by a scant 10 nonfarm jobs in July to total 10,640. Accommodation and food services continued its seasonal rise, adding 80 jobs to total 1,670. Wholesale trade also surged in July, adding 80 jobs to total 480. Retail trade also performed well, adding 50 jobs to total 1,360.

Total nonfarm employment in Wasco County fell by 20 jobs to total 10,200 in July. Job losses in July were heaviest in local government education, where summer break cut 230 jobs, dropping its total to 560. The private sector rose by 220 jobs in July, led by a gain of 110 in professional and business services, increasing its total to 570. Manufacturing also performed well in July, rising by 70 jobs to 840. Leisure and hospitality responded to the summer weather by adding 60 jobs to total 1,330.

Hood River County rose by 270 nonfarm jobs or 2.6 percent over the year ending in July. Manufacturing led the way for Hood River County, rising by 90 jobs or 6.4 percent over the year. Educational and health services rose by 60 jobs or 3.3 percent over the year, while wholesale trade and retail trade each rose by 50. Local government fell by 20 jobs over the year with a loss of 10 in local government education and a drop of 10 in other local government.

Wasco County cut 130 nonfarm jobs over the year ending in July for a loss of 1.3 percent. Leisure and hospitality fell 60 jobs shy of its total last July.

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