This week, the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis released unemployment numbers broken down by age. As unemployment has reached record low rates, OEA’s post data shows how different generations are faring in the labor market.
Similar to job polarization, the recession created an age gap in unemployment. Oregonians in their 40’s and 50’s had lower employment rates, which became large component of conversations around unemployment. In the national narrative, attention turned to job retraining and targeting workers who might have less recent job training. The latest numbers show a lift in unemployment by age, largely concentrated in this age group.
As unemployment continues to drop, 3.5% as of this February, analyses like these are important. Aggregated data overlooks the nuance that the OEA breakdown offers. As we seek to understand our region, and the economic trends that occur in it, we’ll continue to keep an eye on the subtleties of the numbers we gather.