Oregon Unemployment Rate Goes From Record Low To Record High

New data from the Oregon Employment Department shows Oregon’s unemployment rate went from a historic low of 3.5% in March to a record high of 14.2% in April.  The state lost 266,600 jobs in April, or one in eight jobs statewide.  Employment Department senior economic analyst Anna Johnson says the numbers probably significantly understate the crisis since they cover only the opening weeks of the epidemic.  The April jobless rate of topped the worst days of the Great Recession, when Oregon unemployment peaked around 12% in 2009.  Oregon’s jobless rate was comparable to the national rate, which was 14.7% in April – the highest since the Great Depression, when unemployment topped 25%.  The state’s lodging sector shed nearly 60% of its jobs, while restaurants and bars lost more than half of their jobs. Health care and retail also tallied substantial losses.

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