Economy in Central Oregon

By Nicole Ramos  | Regional Economist, East Cascades | Oregon Employment Department

Year-over-year, Oregon’s total nonfarm payroll employment grew by 1.8%, adding 35,200 jobs. In Central Oregon, total nonfarm payroll employment was up by 4,480 jobs over the year.

Jefferson County saw employment increase by 420 jobs year-over-year, while Crook County saw total nonfarm payroll employment decrease by 430 during this time. Finally, Deschutes County employment increased by 4,490 jobs year-over-year.

Oregon’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased slightly from 3.5% in September to 3.6% in October, marking the second increase of the year. The nation’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate also increased slightly in October and is now 3.8%.

In Central Oregon, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased in the counties of Deschutes and Jefferson and increased in Crook County. In Deschutes County, the unemployment rate went from 3.7% in September to 3.6% in October, while in Jefferson County, it went from 4.5% in September to 4.4% in October. In contrast, in Crook County, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate went from 5.5% in September to 5.6% in October.

Topic of the Month: Commuting Patterns

The U.S. Census Bureau recently updated their commuting pattern data, so this month’s special topic focuses on this data at the county level, specifically for Deschutes County, but city data is available. Their OnTheMap data shows where workers are employed and where they live and can be used to understand the commuting patterns of workers within a community, such as the number of workers commuting into a community versus the number of workers commuting out of a community for work and the number of individuals that work and live within a community. The data also provides inflow and outflow characteristics of workers, such as ages, earnings, and industry groupings. If you find the census application hard to navigate or would like an analysis of your area, feel free to reach out. For an example of the data available and to read about commuting patterns in Deschutes County, download the attached PDF.