The Multnomah County Economic Indicators May report was just released, and there are no surprises:  unemployment is way up, and building permits were way down (major decrease in single family home permits).  The office is predicting high unemployment for the next few years, and the food service industry was hit the hardest.

Highlights of the report:

-The Portland unemployment rate reached 14 percent in April. Noticeably higher than the 11.2 percent rate in April of 2009.

-The Multnomah County unemployment rate is slightly higher than the U.S. and Oregon rate. Washington County had a relatively low rate

-The latest forecast from the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis projects very high unemployment rates for the state through the rest of the year, declining to 10 percent by the end of 2022.

-Residential building permit filings dropped noticeably in April in the Portland region. Most of this decline was fueled by a 42 percent decrease in single family home permits compared to the previous month.

-Applications for larger residential construction projects did not decline significantly. However, there is great variation from month to month in that data making a trend hard to identify.