Posted by: Josh Lehner | June 12, 2012

Oregon Payroll Employment

As you may have noticed we have not been providing as much reporting on the monthly employment figures in recent months. This is not because they are not showing strong gains – although this morning’s report certainly does show a large gain – rather it is because there are some technical issues with the Current Establishment Survey (CES), or payroll survey, at the moment. As discussed at greater length in our most recent economic forecast – see the Oregon section – our office examines four main labor market indicators to gauge the health of employment in the state: the monthly payroll employment survey, the monthly household employment survey, monthly withholding tax receipts and the quarterly census of employment and wages. Right now three out of the four indicate solid economic improvement, albeit at a subdued pace, that is at least as strong as the national figures, if not slightly stronger, while one of the four shows essentially no improvement over the past year to year and a half. That one bad indicator is the monthly payroll employment survey, which eventually will be revised to look like the others. Oregon’s labor market is improving right along with the nation overall, if not a little bit faster.

How do we know the CES will be revised upward? Using a preliminary benchmarking procedure, discussed here previously, reveals that in December 2011, Oregon’s employment is actually about 10,000 higher than the current CES data shows. As mentioned in the forecast document, this revision reveals a state that is expanding at a slow pace and not a state that is stagnating. In terms of Oregon’s relative rankings, according to the current CES data, Oregon’s year-over-year growth ranked 32nd fastest in December, however after revisions that ranking will improve to something like 12th fastest. The exact ranking will not be known until all states’ data are revised, however we do know that Oregon’s revisions will be upward.


Responses

  1. […] basis with a lag – to gauge the health of Oregon’s employment situation. As mentioned previously and discussed in our last forecast document, there appeared to be a few important differences […]

  2. […] increased to 8.7% from 8.5%  and the state gained 1,800 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis. As noted previously our office has been focusing on other labor market indicators in addition to the monthly employment […]

  3. […] to 8.7% from 8.5% and the state gained 1,800 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis. As noted previously our office has been focusing on other labor market indicators in addition to the monthly employment […]


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