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State adds jobs in May as economy bumps along

Oregon’s economy added about 4,200 jobs in May and another 6,200 in April, as the state unemployment rate held steady at 6.9 percent last month.

State employment officials said Tuesday that Oregon’s job growth has been “strong and continuous” in the past 11 months. Several industries have added jobs, including leisure and hospitality (up 2,300 jobs), retail trade (up 1,200) and other services (up 1,100).

State officials said the financial activities industry was the only major sector without a jobs recovery. It employed 91,000 in May, a level that hasn't changed much in the past four years.

The real estate component of the industry is adding jobs, but banking and insurance are seeing little to no growth.

In the past 12 months, Oregon businesses have grown by 41,000 jobs, or about 3 percent, according to the state officials. Construction has come roaring back, growing by about 10.5 percent since May 2013.

Oregon's unemployment rate has been between 6.8 and 7 percent for each of the first five months of the year. State officials also said fewer people were working part time when they would rather be working full time.