Year in Review 2016: Yamhill County

Year in Review 2016: Yamhill County

by Pat O'Connor

April 13, 2017

Revised payroll employment estimates for 2016 show that Oregon’s job growth slowed from the 2015 rate of growth. That was also the case in Yamhill County.

On an annual average basis, Oregon’s payroll employment grew 51,900 jobs, or 2.9 percent, in 2016. That compares with a gain of 58,800 jobs, or 3.4 percent, in 2015.

On an average annual basis, Yamhill County’s payroll employment grew by 210 jobs, or 0.6 percent, in 2016. In 2015, Yamhill County’s employment grew 1,100 or 3.5 percent.

Yamhill County’s private sector grew 0.4 percent in 2016, adding 120 jobs.

The county’s construction sector reported the steepest losses during the recent recession, but the industry is starting to show healthy growth again. Construction employment added 160 jobs in 2015. In 2016, the sector added 210 jobs to grow 13.6 percent. Despite the recent healthy growth, Yamhill County’s construction employment in 2016 was 440 jobs, 20 percent below its 2007 prerecession level.

Yamhill County’s manufacturing had been a bright spot in the economy, recording positive growth in both 2014 and 2015. However, 2016 was a tough year for the county’s manufacturing sector, which shed 310 jobs (-4.7%). The late 2015 closure of the paper mill in Newberg, previously owned by Smurfit, is a big reason for the sharp decline in manufacturing employment in 2016. The county’s manufacturing employment in 2016 was 340 jobs, or 5.1 percent, below its 2007 employment level. Oregon’s manufacturing employment in 2016 was 8.0 percent below its employment level in 2007.

Within trade, transportation, and utilities, wholesale trade employment grew 2.9 percent, adding 20 jobs in 2016. Retail trade employment grew 1.7 percent, adding 60 jobs in 2016. Transportation, warehousing, and utilities shed 180 jobs in 2016, declining 25.4 percent. Evergreen Aviation in McMinnville was part of Yamhill County’s transportation sector. 

Leisure and hospitality has shown employment growth six years in a row. After adding 150 jobs in 2015 and 650 jobs from 2009 to 2015, the sector gained 200 jobs in 2016.

Public-sector employment gained 90 in 2016 or 1.9 percent. Most of the growth occurred in local government, which added 50 jobs. Federal employment added 10 in 2016, while state government added 30 jobs. 

Benchmarking Process

The newly revised payroll employment numbers are the result of the annual benchmarking process. This revision process is conducted by Oregon Employment Department staff in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. Employment numbers for both 2015 and 2016 are revised. For the monthly data through September 2016, original survey-based estimates were replaced with universe employment counts from the Unemployment Insurance tax system. Numbers from October through December 2016 were then re-estimated using sample employment data from a survey of businesses.