Posted by: Josh Lehner | June 15, 2011

Composition of Employment Growth – Updated

I was pulling this information together for another purpose but thought it is interesting enough that I should post it here as well. Total Nonfarm employment in Oregon, on a seasonally adjusted basis, reached its low point of the business cycle in December 2009. At that time there were 1,591,100 payroll jobs in the state and over the past 17 months the state has added 34,200 jobs for a 2.15 percent increase. (The U.S. has seen an increase of 1.39 percent from its trough) Which industries have these 34,200 jobs been in? The two graphs below illustrate the composition of this job growth. The first graph breaks the data into major industries and the percentages in parenthesis represent that industry’s growth rate. For example, Mining and Logging added 600 jobs between Dec ’09 and May ’11, which is a 9.2 percent increase within that industry. The second graph below goes deeper into the industry breakouts and provides a little more detail.

UPDATE: U.S. Growth by Industry

Total Nonfarm employment, on a seasonally adjusted basis, reached its low point at the national level in February 2010 and has grown 1.797 million since then (data through May 2011). That growth is distributed across the major industries as shown in the graph below. Note that the numbers are in thousands so 600 really means 600,000.

The next graph compares the industry growth between Oregon and the U.S. The percentages represent the share (or contribution) of each industry’s changes to the overall change. Some industries have a negative share as these have lost jobs over the past year or so even as the overall economy and employment have grown. Note that the time horizons are slightly different for Oregon and the U.S. Oregon’s employment bottomed in December 2009 while the nation’s did so in February 2010. The job growth is calculated based on each location’s trough, so Oregon has seen employment grow for 17 months while the US has seen it for 15 months.

Overall, the general pattern holds across Oregon that we see at the national level. Construction has seen no employment gains, while Information and Financial Activities have basically held steady. Where we see the largest differences are in Manufacturing (Oregon’s doing better, as expected), Professional and Business Services and Government (government in Oregon has not lost as many jobs). As can be seen in the last graph, there are some sub-sector industries where these differences really stand out.

Oregon’s seeing stronger Trade, Transportation and Utilities growth primarily due to Retail Trade, while the U.S.’s larger share of growth coming from the Professional and Business Services is due to larger gains in Administrative and Waste Services. The share of gains coming from the Professional and Technical Services sub-sector are the same. While overall Leisure and Hospitality’s share of growth is approximately equal between the U.S. and Oregon, the composition of the change is different. Oregon has seen stronger growth on the Arts, Entertainment and Recreation side, while the nation has seen stronger growth on the Accommodations and Food Service side. The other sizable differences are in Government. Federal employment in Oregon has decreased more so than at the national level, State employment in Oregon has increased while overall State employment across the country has declined. The biggest discrepancy appears to be at the Local level. Local governments across the country have cut a substantial number of jobs in recent months, while in Oregon the proportion is lower. Some of this is probably due to timing as budgets for next fiscal year are just being passed in Oregon. Expectations remain for further job declines in government in Oregon at all levels.


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