Oregon Economy
Oregon has one of the fastest growing economies in the nation. With important and growing industries in manufacturing, apparel, and green technologies, Oregon has a solid base in vital markets that will continue to enrich the economy moving forward.

Per capita GDP

Oregonís per capita GDP, adjusted for inflation, has been growing fairly consistentlyóand more quickly than both Washington and the U.S.-- over the past 15 years. If this trend continues, Oregon may even pass Washingtonís per capita GDP in the future.
GDP Growth

Real GDP growth in Oregon has been quite volatile, but, in all but the worst of the 2009 recession, GDP growth has remained positive. It has also generally exceeded Washington and the U.S.ís GDP growth rates. Ensuring a strong Oregon economy in the future is crucial to continuing this remarkable pattern of growth.
Household income

Oregonís median household income, adjusted for inflation, has remained relatively steady over the past 15 years and has only recently exceeded the USís real median household income. However, Oregon still trails Washington in this statistic.
Oregon Employment
Oregon's unemployment rate is one of the highest in the country; one of Oregonís biggest problems right now is that so many of its workers are out of work. However, overall unemployment has been slowly decreasing, and it is important to see where jobs are located in the economy and what industries have the highest potential for employment growth.

Unemployment

Oregonís unemployment rate has been consistently higher than both the U.S. and Washingtonís unemployment rates over the past decade. Helping businesses create new jobs is a crucial goal to decrease Oregonís unemployment.
Top 5 Industries for Oregon Employment

Oregon has many different industries driving its vibrant economy. Many Oregon jobs are within the healthcare and retail industries, but manufacturing, government, and food and lodging are also crucial for keeping Oregonians employed. Beyond these top-5 industries, many Oregonians are also employed in the production and distribution of durable goods as well as with financial-related occupations.
Oregon employment by business size

More than half of Oregonís workers are employed by companies with fewer than 100 employees, and over a quarter are employed by companies with fewer than 20 employees. As policymakers continue to adjust employment regulations, it is important to consider the many small businesses that employ the majority of Oregonians.
Oregon Exports
Exports have always been a crucial sector of the Oregon economy. Although recently major exports have shifted from logging and forestry to high tech manufacturing and related industries, exports still remain an important component of the Oregon economy and play an important role in both Oregonís GDP and its employment.

Export Employment

Oregonís employment is helped by its stronger-than-average export market. While Washington exports account for a larger percentage of jobs than in Oregonís exports do, Oregon still has a larger portion of jobs associated with exports than California and the US as a whole.
Oregon Exports by Sector

Oregonís export industry is particularly strong in computers and electronics manufacturing, and agriculture also plays an important role.
Key Sectors


Five Pillars of Prosperity - 2015

The 2015 Oregon Legislature is preparing for a long, five month legislative session that begins February 2, and has begun considering its priorities for this year.

We believe the 2015 Oregon Legislature will advance the prosperity of the entire state if it focuses on five key issues.

Together, these five issues form the five pillars of prosperity for our state.

These are the issues we’ll be paying attention to, talking about, and holding our elected officials accountable to this year.

Oregon’s challenges are well documented, from high unemployment to stagnant incomes to systemic education problems. But, solutions to move Oregonians forward are attainable.

Five Pillars of Prosperity 2015

1: Grow Jobs and Incomes

Oregon’s unemployment rate has constantly been above the national average for the past two decades, leaving a higher percentage of Oregonians without jobs and steady incomes. Reducing unemployment—and creating high-skill and high-wage job opportunities—is crucial for Oregon’s economic growth.


2: Put Our Natural Resources to Work

Oregon’s rural economies have long experienced below-average growth as compared to their urban counterparts, leaving many small communities struggling. Careful environmental stewardship to sustainably produce food, nursery products, wood products, and other agriculture crops will allow these rural economies to expand and grow.


3: Modernize our infrastructure

Oregon’s infrastructure is simply getting too old. The American Society of Civil Engineers’ 2013 Report Card for Oregon’s infrastructure gave it a C- grade, and found that Oregon has 67 dams deemed high hazard and 431 bridges that are considered structurally deficient. Fixing Oregon’s roads, bridges, dams, and other major infrastructure will make the lives of Oregonians safer while revitalizing the transportation industry and allowing for faster, more efficient deliveries of Oregon products.


4: Invest Wisely in Education

Oregon’s graduation rate is shockingly low—only 68% of public high school students graduate in four years. That’s 12 percentage points below the national average, and indicates that Oregon high school students are not getting the support and help they need to graduate. Helping Oregon students develop skills and plan for their careers will revitalize their educations and help the entire economy grow. Investments into K-12 education as well as career and technical education and other institutions of higher education will boost the labor force as well as give Oregonians a better future.


5: Lower the National Debt

The US’s total public debt is over $18 trillion, more than 100% of total yearly US GDP, and is still growing. Carrying this staggering level of national debt will slow economic growth, and a less vibrant economy will reduce our standard of living. Ultimately, we will face an economic crisis if we don’t change course.

Oregon’s congressional delegation needs to be constructive participants in a plan that stabilizes debt as a share of the U.S. economy and then puts it on a clear downward path. Credible, gradual debt reduction can reverse all of the negative economic consequences of elevated and rising debt by improving business confidence and reducing uncertainty.

The Oregon Prosperity Project will engage you on these five crucial pillars for our state in 2015, and help you learn more and get involved in support of all Oregonians.