Oregon Insight: Pandemic decimated low-wage jobs, while high-wage work expanded

Erwin Oropesa

Here is The Oregonian’s weekly look at the numbers behind the state’s economy. View past installments here.

The pandemic recession was the steepest, deepest economic collapse in Oregon history.

But not for everyone.

More than one in 10 Oregon jobs paying below $35,000 a year disappeared in the early weeks of the pandemic, according to a new report by Josh Lehner, with the state’s Office of Economic Analysis. Oregon’s jobless rate soared to an all-time high of 13.2%.

During the same period, though, Oregon actually added jobs paying more than $64,000 a year.

The data underscores the notoriously inequitable nature of the pandemic recession. Frontline workers in restaurants, bars, hotels, gyms, boutiques and many other fields were thrown out of work when the state ordered them shut down to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

Nearly 20% of jobs in food preparation and “personal care” (which

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The Daily Beast

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Wall Street’s best firms don’t just look at the stocks, they look at the big picture, too. And Oppenheimer’s chief investment strategist, John Stoltzfus, is particularly adept at showing us the macro view. In his first note of the new year, Stoltzfus notes a series of factors that are going to impact the markets. The big news, of course, the 800-pound gorilla that cannot be ignored, is the ongoing COVID epidemic. The disease is coming back strong now that we’re well into winter – which was somewhat expected, as it’s typical behavior for flu-like respiratory viruses. With the winter virus surge, we also must contend with a new round of lockdown policies, imposed from state or local levels. It’s hoped that the newly available COVID vaccines will, by springtime, start to put a damper on the novel coronavirus.”The length of time

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