Regarded as a lagging indicator by most economists, this chart provides a five-year perspective on unemployment in the Tri-County area. Since early 2011, unemployment rates have been reduced significantly. As of December 2015, Deschutes County’s unemployment rate of 5.6% is finally lower than the rates in December 2007. Crook County’s rate fell to 8.0%, the lowest rate since March 2008. The unemployment rates keep dropping in Jefferson County from 16% in April 2009 to 7.3% today, a statistically significant decline.
Because of Central Oregon’s sustained strong in-migration, job creation typically lags population growth, a reason why historically, Oregon’s unemployment rate tracks higher than the national rate.