Oregon Public Broadcasting

Oregon's unemployment rate ticked up for the second straight month in July. It now stands at 8.7 percent.

But the number of people holding jobs in the state also climbed, according to the Oregon Employment Department. The state gained 1,800 seasonally adjusted jobs from June to July.

Craig Spivey, spokesman for the Employment Department, said the state knows of 17,000 current job openings.

"The top occupations are in retail sales persons, heavy tractor and trailer truck drivers, registered nurses, software developer applications and customer service representatives," Spivey said.

For statistical reasons, the unemployment rate can climb even when hiring is strong. For example, more people may be entering the workforce for the first time as they graduate from college or move to the state.

This story originally appeared on Oregon Public Broadcasting.

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