The November 2015 State of Oregon Economic Indexes of was released today. Full report is available here. We thank KeyBank for their generous support of this project.
Regional economies gained momentum as 2015 drew to a close. Highlights of the report include:
- Both the raw numbers and the moving average measures, which smooth monthly volatility, were above average for all major metro areas in November. Recall that “zero” for these measures indicates relative average growth; each region has its own underlying growth rate.
- Residential housing unites permitted was strong across the state, contributing negatively to the Salem area measure. Bend, Eugene-Springfield, and Medford housing permits jumped on the back of multifamily housing projects; expect some moderation in the December numbers
- Individual employment components broad labor market indicators generally contributed positively to the measures. Low unemployment rates, low levels of initial unemployment claims, and steady labor force growth indicate that local labor markets are strong in Oregon.
- The Portland metro area is now less of an outlier as most regions are growing at rates similar to that experienced in past expansions.
Reminder: The regional measures are prone to potentially large swings due to the volatility of some of the underlying data, particularly measures of employment. The moving average measures smooth out much of that volatility.