Much like at the state level, unemployment in southern Oregon counties remains statistically similar, with a slight uptick in most cases. With that said, the region remains in much better shape than it was this time in 2013 from an employment standpoint.
In Jackson County, total payroll declined 300 jobs in March, with 220 coming from the retail sector. The March figure of 8.6 percent is unchanged from February, but much better than the March, 2013 figure of 9.7 percent. Professional and business services lost 200 jobs; however, there were gains in leisure and hospitality (150), manufacturing (80) and health care and social assistance (40). Federal and state government employment picked up a combined total of 70 jobs, but that was offset by a loss of 110 in local government employment.
In Josephine County, there was a gain of 170 jobs, though the unemployment went up slightly from 9.6 to 9.7 percent. In March of last year, the unemployment rate was 11.3 percent.
Over on the coast, Coos County gained 20 jobs, but saw their unemployment rate rise to 9.1 percent from 9.0. Curry County's unemployment rate rose from 10.4 to 10.6 from the month before. Coos County's unemployment rate reflects a 1.2 percent improvement from year to year. It has only improved 0.1 percent in Curry County, where unemployment remains in double digits.