Jackson County's seasonally adjusted jobless rate slipped under 9 percent in January and neighboring Josephine County stayed below double-digits as well.
The workforce typically contracts following the Christmas season and such was the case when payroll employment decreased by 3,740 jobs in January, mostly due to seasonal reductions by large retailers.
Even so, Jackson County's seasonally adjusted unemployment figure compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics was 8.9 percent, solidly down from the 10.4 percent January 2013 mark. Josephine County fell to 9.7 percent, well below the 11.6 percent figure a year earlier.
"We would expect it to go up slightly after the seasonal layoffs," said Guy Tauer, a regional economist with the Oregon Employment Department.
Jackson County saw retail trade employment decline by 2,820 positions in January, construction employment fall by 210 jobs and manufacturing drop 90 jobs. However, manufacturing was up 310 jobs from a year earlier.
— Greg Stiles