Friday, January 9, 2009

The State of the State's Unemployment

Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the latest unemployment figures for the US for December, and they are predictably grim.  The US unemployment rate is now at 7.2%.  While the individual state figures for December won't be out for a few days, here is a look at some data released a few days ago: this is the unemployment rate for November in selected metro areas in Oregon.  Note that adjustments are still being made (and it looks like Oregon's November rate is now estimated at 7.9% rather than the 8.1% from earlier).  But here is a good look at which areas are faring better and which are faring worse. 

Not surprisingly, the areas that experienced the biggest real estate bust, Bend and Medford, are doing much worse than the state average, but Eugene is worse than average as well - something I would not have guessed.  Corvallis is very healthy at 5.6% and Portland is a little below average but still at a depressingly high 7.2%. 

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