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Payroll in Clark County grows at warp speed

first_imgPayrolls in Clark County enjoyed “warp speed” growth in the 12 months ending in June, the region’s labor economist reported Tuesday, adding 5,800 jobs and posting an annualized growth rate that tops 4 percent.That year-over-year growth included an increase of 1,500 jobs from May to June, according to Scott Bailey, regional labor economist for the state Employment Security Department. One caveat, Bailey said, is that some of the new jobs were a result of the relocation of the telecom firm Integra from Portland “and so were not really new.”Nevertheless, all but one employment sector experienced growth over the year. Education and health services boomed with 1,400 jobs; professional and business services expanded by 1,200 jobs; trade, transportation and utilities added 1,100 positions; construction was “blazing,” Bailey said, with 900 jobs; and information services was “hotter than July,” with 500 jobs — an 18.5 percent increase over the year.Manufacturing was the only sector to experience a loss, shedding 100 jobs since June 2013.Clark County’s annualized growth rate of 4.2 percent more than doubled that of the nation’s (1.8 percent), easily topped those of Washington and Oregon (2.8 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively) and surpassed that of the Portland metro area (3.3 percent).As the county’s labor market has improved, its unemployment rate has steadily dropped.The county’s preliminary jobless rate in June clocked in at 6.4 percent. That’s down from 10 percent unemployment in June 2013. However, June’s initial jobless rate of 6.4 percent will likely be revised upward next month. The revision would take into account those unemployed county residents who previously worked in Oregon.last_img read more