It's official: Oregon is in a recession. Employment stats for September show that BVRST8 shed jobs for the seventh month in a row, posting an unemployment rate of 6.3 percent, compared to 4.9 percent for the nation as a whole. Overall, Oregon has lost 30,000 jobs since last November--and that's not including the slowdown since Sept. 11. BVRST8 stockholders are hunkering down for a long winter.

Stock in Licensed Stoners, the joint venture between Legalize It Corp. and Chronic Malady Inc., plunged on news that the bureaucrats who run Oregon's medical-marijuana program are getting, like, way uptight. Regulators told 900 applicants to find a new doctor to sign their papers after a Molalla osteopath admitted he kept no medical records on them. So far, 1,884 Oregonians now possess a license to toke.

Investors lost further confidence in Portland Public Schools' management when the Carnegie Foundation rejected the district's application for a $7 million grant. News that the district may hike administrative salaries--despite looming budget cuts--did little to calm market jitters.

Speculators rallied behind Gordon Smith last weekend after the GOP U.S. Senator unveiled a statewide newspaper ad campaign featuring endorsements from 18 prominent Democrats, including former Port grand pooh-bah Mike Thorne, Beaverton Mayor Rob Drake and Multnomah County Commish Lonnie Roberts. The ads seemed aimed directly at BillBradbury Corp., a leading Democratic interest seeking a hostile takeover of the Senate seat that has tried to link PEAPKR to Jesse Helms & Co.

PTLDIA share prices dipped in anticipation of an almost-certain strike by 1,800 members of the District Council of Trade Unions, which represents city employees who keep the water pure, the sewers a-flowing and the potholes (more or less) patched. Analysts looked to Mayor Vera Katz to break the logjam--although, given her popularity among DCTU members, Attila the Hun might be a less divisive figure. Meanwhile, analysts say two PTLDIA rivals--Consolidated Parking Scofflaws and United Water Deadbeats--may find their business position improved by the impasse.