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Ten months into the pandemic, Oregon has regained just 37% of the jobs lost in this recession. 

PMG FILE PHOTO - Online shopping in December boosted jobs across Oregon for delivery drivers, like this electric UPS truck demonstrated last fall on the Portland State University campus. Oregon's restaurant industry took a big hit in employment in December as the pandemic forced closures.Oregon lost about 25,500 jobs in December as the state's unemployment rate rose to 6.4% last month.

State employment department officials said Wednesday, Jan. 20, that December's job losses came after the state gained about 2,100 jobs in November. Oregon's unemployment rate in November was 6%.

"December's job losses reflect the devastation COVID-19 continues to inflict on the lives and livelihoods of Oregonians," said Gail Krumenauer, Oregon Employment Department economist. "Ten months into the pandemic, Oregon has regained just 37% of the jobs lost in this recession." 

Officials said the state's leisure and hospitality industry lost the most jobs last month, about 28,600. Several other industries also cut at least 800 jobs in December, including private educational services (down 1,700 jobs), government (down 1,300), wholesale trade (down 1,100), manufacturing (down 900), and construction (down 800).

The biggest job losses came from full-service restaurants, which cut 17,600 jobs in December as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to hammer the industry.

Retail trade, transportation and utilities, health care and professional services all gained jobs in December, officials said. Retail trade was up 2,200 jobs, mostly because online shopping pushed a demand for delivery drivers and warehouse workers, officials said. Transportation, warehousing and utilities gained 2,200 jobs. Health care and social assistance gained 2,200. Professional and business services gained 2,100.


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