Oregon’s Multiple Jobholders in 2023

by Anna Johnson

June 7, 2024

In 2023, 118,000 Oregonians held more than one job in addition to their primary job and were considered multiple jobholders. The multiple jobholding rate – the proportion of multiple jobholders among all employed workers 16 years and older – was 5.8%, a return to the level seen prior to the pandemic in 2019. Oregon’s multiple-jobholding rate reached a record high of 8.7% in 1995. The national multiple jobholding rate in 2023 was 5.0%, an increase from 4.8% in 2022.  

Multiple jobholding has generally become rarer in Oregon and the U.S. since 1995. Research shows that people are less likely to take on a second job than they were in the past. The pandemic recession and the recovery in 2021 and 2022 showed a decrease in the multiple jobholding rate in Oregon. Then in 2023, the multiple job holding rate jumped from 4.6% to 5.8%. Data in this article comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Population Survey.

Oregonians More Likely to Work Multiple Jobs in 2023

Oregon workers were more likely to hold more than one job at a time than our national counterparts, a trend dating back at least two decades. Oregon’s multiple jobholding rate has been higher than the U.S. every year since 1994, with the brief exceptions of 2004 and 2022.

Both the U.S. and Oregon’s multiple job holding rates decreased in 2020. Since then, the U.S. and Oregon have experienced different trends: Oregon’s rate decreased until the recent reversal in 2023 while the U.S. rate has been increasing steadily over the last three years.
Graph showing multiple jobholding rates in Oregon

Economic conditions can certainly affect whether or not an individual wants or needs to work more than one job, but there is no clear association between the multiple-jobholding rate and the business cycle. That is because fewer jobs are available during recessions, right when more people need a second job to help meet their expenses. During expansions, increased income and looser credit constraints mean fewer people need a second job to meet expenses. These factors seem to cancel each other out on the whole, which is why multiple jobholding rates don’t rise or fall significantly with the business cycle.

Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Multiple-Jobholding Rates

Northern states generally have higher multiple jobholding rates than southern states, as shown in the map. Montana had the highest multiple jobholding rate at 7.9% in 2023, followed by Maine and Nebraska at 7.7%. Mississippi had the lowest multiple job holding rate at 3.3%.

Multiple jobholding among Oregon’s neighboring states in 2023 ranged from a high of 5.7% in Washington, to 5.4% in Idaho, to just 5.0% in Nevada and 4.4% in California.
Figure showing Multiple Jobholding Rate, 2023

Who Are the Multiple Jobholders?

Demographic information about multiple jobholders isn’t available at the state level, but there is more detailed information about people who hold more than one job at the national level.

When looking at multiple jobholders by age groups, those in the “prime working age” group (25 to 54 years old) had the highest multiple jobholding rate, at 5.3% in 2023. Younger workers (16 to 19 years old) had a multiple jobholding rate of 3.6%, the lowest of any age group. Those 55 and older had rates of multiple jobholding at 4.7%. Workers 20 to 24 years old had a multiple jobholding rate of 4.8%.

In 2023, those of Hispanic or Latino ethnicity had a multiple jobholding rate of 3.4%. Black or African Americans held multiple jobs at a rate of 6.o%, white people had a multiple jobholding rate of 5.0% and Asians had rate of 3.7%.

Women’s multiple jobholding rate was 5.5% and men’s was 4.6% in 2023. When this series of data began in 1994, the multiple jobholding rate for men and women was essentially equal, hovering around 6.0%. However, as multiple jobholders decreased for men and women in the late 1990s, women began consistently having higher multiple jobholding rates than men.

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