Oregon's Economy: Wages

pink tulips
The Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm in rural Clackamas County. (Oregon State Archives Photo)
Oregon began a new three-tier minimum wage rate on July 1, 2020. The tiers vary by geography, with the highest rate of $13.25 per hour within the Portland urban growth boundary, a standard rate of $12.00 per hour in other areas of the state, and a rate of $11.50 per hour in designated nonurban counties. Oregon’s minimum wage will increase by $0.50 or $0.75 each year through 2022, depending on the area. Starting in 2023, Oregon’s minimum wage will be adjusted annually according to the increase in the U.S. Consumer Price Index. 

Although Oregon’s minimum wage is higher than most other states, private-sector workers in Oregon tend to work fewer hours per week and their average wage earnings are below the national level. Workers in Oregon earned an average of $1,058 weekly in 2019, which is below the national average of $1,139 per week.

Oregon workers earned an annual average of $55,027 in 2019, which varies widely by industry. The average annual pay in the information industry was $89,699, the most of any broad sector, followed by federal government ($76,990), professional and business services ($73,469), financial activities ($73,314) and manufacturing ($71,434). The lowest earnings were at jobs in leisure and hospitality, where pay averaged $23,798 per year.

Of course, the average wage for an industry does not reveal how many low- or high-wage jobs are in an industry. One-third of Oregon’s jobs paid an average wage of less than $15 per hour in 2019 and another 22% were between $15 and $20 per hour. The remaining jobs paid at least $20 per hour.​

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