Las Vegas Sun

October 1, 2014

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Economy:

Las Vegas, state unemployment on the rise

Nevada’s unemployment rate inched up to 9.6 percent in June, with Las Vegas and Carson City posting major increases in jobless numbers.

The state Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation reported today there were an estimated 132,400 persons out of work statewide in June, an increase of 900 from May.

Department Economist William Anderson said Nevada’s rate “remains stubbornly high” compared with the nation’s 7.6 percent, but he added it was still 2 percent below June 2012.

There were an estimated 100,100 unemployed in the Las Vegas area, a 10.1 percent rate. That is the highest rate since the 10.2 percent rate in January. In May, there were 92,400 people unemployed, or 9.3 percent.

Carson City’s rate of unemployment jumped from 9.5 percent to 10.1 percent.

The department did report, however, that there was a growth of 3,700 new jobs during the month. And for the first six months of 2013, the number of new jobs totals 23,600.

Gov. Brian Sandoval was optimistic about the number of new jobs, saying there have been improvements in nearly all sectors of the economy, but he added more work needs to be done to improve Nevada’s economic picture.

The department said the leisure and hospitality sector added the most jobs — 7,400 in six months.

"All in all, the June report suggests that the jobs picture in Nevada remains on the mend,” Anderson said.

In the Las Vegas area, the leisure and hospitality sector recorded an increase in employment from 267,400 in May to 270,200 in June. Construction jobs increased from 37,100 in May to 38,500 in June. But trade transportation and utilities fell to 156,300 in June, down 400 jobs from May.

The department said the unemployment rate in Washoe County rose from 9.2 percent in May to 9.8 percent in June.

Not included in the statewide jobless numbers are “the discouraged workers,” Anderson said. There are 13,200 who have given up looking for work.

In a report issued earlier Thursday by the department, the number of workers submitting their first claims for unemployment benefits fell to 14,910, down from the 16,183 in May. It was the second lowest number of initial claims since 13,932 in September 2012.

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