While some other states with high unemployment, including Michigan, have seen their labor forces shrink, Oregon’s labor force has grown. Economists say some of the growth appears to be driven by people who moved here with money they made in California, whether from real estate or stock market investments, and expected to get by but now must look for work.
“It’s just so depressing to hear them because they thought they had life handled and they don’t,” said Bobbie Faust, an employment counselor who works for the state in Bend.
The Telfords are among those facing trouble. They had presumed they would be able to sell their house in Fresno for more than $300,000 to help pay the mortgage on the new house they bought near the Deschutes River in Bend for $475,000. But the Fresno house has yet to sell, and Mrs. Telford, an accountant, has lost a series of jobs at small firms here that she said had downsized. The couple’s only income now comes from her unemployment checks and her husband’s salary as a high school teacher.
“The cash flow is negative,” Mrs. Telford said. “This will be the first time we’ve had to go into savings.”
A very good article about some of what is happening underneath the surface of the economy. Read it all.