State unemployment rate drops in November

SALEM — Oregon’s unemployment rate dropped to 6% in November from 6.8%, as revised, in October. This put Oregon’s rate below the U.S. unemployment rate which dropped to 6.7% in November from 6.9% in October.

“On Nov. 18, Oregon implemented a ‘freeze’ to combat the rise of COVID-19 in the state. This employment press release covers Oregon’s employment situation just prior to the ongoing freeze, which has affected employers and tens of thousands of workers in recent weeks,” said Gail Krumenauer, State Employment Economist with the Oregon Employment Department.

Oregon’s total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 4,200 jobs in November, following a revised gain of 9,800 jobs in October. Oregon employers added jobs in each of the past seven months, and the state has recovered 46% of the jobs cut in March and April. Over the past five months the rate of job growth slowed. Monthly growth averaged 9,600 jobs in September and October, while more rapid gains averaging 17,000 per month occurred in July and August.

Enrollment in health care strong

SALEM — Nearly 141,000 Oregonians chose health plans for 2021 through HealthCare.gov, according to initial data from the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.

“This year has thrown Oregonians a curve ball with the COVID-19 pandemic and devastating wildfires,” said Chiqui Flowers, administrator of the Oregon Health Insurance Marketplace. “The Marketplace will continue to support Oregonians by helping them understand their health coverage options, finding affordable and quality coverage for their family, and connecting them to local experts for direct enrollment assistance.”

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