Oregon Downturn 47 Months and Counting While Oregonians Dream

News Release
November 12, 2004

The Oregon Center for Public Policy issued the following statement today by Michael Leachman, a policy analyst with the OCPP:

Today's announcement by the Oregon Employment Department that Oregon lost 3,200 jobs in October, after adjusting for seasonal variations, shows that Oregon's job market has stagnated since July, and remains stuck with substantially fewer jobs than existed in the state four years ago, prior to the economic downturn.

The OCPP has calculated that Oregon now has 20,600 fewer jobs than in November 2000, when the jobs downturn began. At the same time, Oregon's working-age population has grown by 141,000 since late 2000.

That means Oregon now has a jobs shortfall of 161,000. To put that number in perspective, last month the nation as a whole added 337,000 jobs.

Looked at another way, it has now been 47 months, or almost four years, since Oregon started losing jobs. That makes the current downturn well more than twice the length of the previous jobs downturn in the early 1990s, which lasted just 20 months.

It has been almost four years now, and Oregon is still dreaming of a jobs recovery.

The Oregon Center for Public Policy uses research and analysis to advance policies and practices that improve the economic and social opportunities of low- and moderate-income Oregonians, the majority of Oregonians.