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Employment rates rise in Jefferson and Deschutes County, and remain stable in Crook County.

MADRAS PIONEER LOGO - Employment improves in Jefferson and Deschutes counties in July.The unemployment rates in Jefferson and Deschutes counties were down, and Crook County's rate held steady in July, according to the latest data from the Oregon Employment Department.

In Jefferson County, the unemployment rate was 4.8 percent in July, down from 5.0 percent in June. The rate remains down from this time last year, when it was 5.6 percent.

Jefferson County lost 120 jobs in July, slightly more losses than typically expected this time of year.

However, employment levels are up by 130 jobs (up 2 percent) in Jefferson County compared to this time last year. Manufacturing and professional and business services each added 60 jobs from last July.

Job losses were largely concentrated in retail trade (down 30 jobs) and financial activities (down 20 jobs).

Deschutes County jobs growing

The rate of job growth over the past year has been accelerating in Deschutes County, with the pace of growth once again above 5 percent.

In the Bend-Redmond Municipal Service Area, the unemployment rate was little changed in July at 3.8 percent. The rate was 3.9 percent in June and 4.3 percent this time last year, but neither change is considered statistically significant.

Deschutes County added 190 jobs in July, although it is more typical to see no employment change in July. The county posted large monthly gains in construction, retail trade, manufacturing, professional and business services, and leisure and hospitality. Job losses were largely concentrated in local education as schools remain out for summer break.

Job growth over the past year spiked back up above 5 percent (up 4,220 jobs). Summer hiring this year has been stronger than the past several years. No private industry sector lost jobs in Deschutes County over the past year.

The largest job gains were seen from leisure and hospitality (up 1,080 jobs); construction (up 750 jobs); and professional and business services (up 380 jobs). The fastest rate of job growth was seen in transportation, warehousing, and utilities, and information; both sectors expanded by around 15.5 percent over the past year.

Crook County rate unchanged

The unemployment rate in Crook County was unchanged in July at 5.4 percent. The rate remains down from this time last year, when it was 6.3 percent.

Crook County lost around 80 jobs in July, a typical change for this time of year, with local schools out on summer break.

Recent revisions revealed that Crook County's employment situation is largely unchanged from last year, with employment levels up less than 1 percent (up 40 jobs).

After years of losses, manufacturing posted notable gains over the past year (up 100 jobs). However, there were sizable losses from wholesale trade and transportation, warehousing, and utilities.

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