Initial unemployment insurance claims down slightly in May |

Initial unemployment insurance claims down slightly in May


CARSON CITY — In May, 10,101 initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits were filed in Nevada, a decline of 5 percent from May 2016 when claims were 10,650, according to report released today by the Nevada Department of Employment and Rehabilitation.

Claims also fell by 4 percent from the previous month. The 12-month average, which best shows the overall trend in claims, continues to fall and is at another post-recession low of 11,152.

"Thus far in 2017, Nevada has had a total of 54,610 initial claims, down 5 percent from last year and the lowest total for the first five months of a year since 1999," said Alessandro Capello, an economist with the Research and Analysis Bureau of the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. "This has allowed the number of initial claims per job to reach its lowest level in the measure's history of 2.06 initial claims per 1,000 jobs. This measure allows comparison to historical claims numbers. With this measure so low, it is likely that Nevada is at or near its floor in terms of initial claims levels."

Other claims activity measures such as the benefits exhaustion rate and the average duration of benefits continue to trend down, reaching respective post-recession lows of 36.67 percent and 13.72 weeks.

An initial claim represents the first stage of filing for unemployment benefits and is therefore most closely related to the number of people who have recently lost their jobs, not the overall level of unemployment. Initial claims tend to increase on a seasonal basis during the fall and winter months, and then fall during the spring and summer.

Initial claims peaked during the recession at 36,414 in December 2008, and the low point for initial claims was 9,358 in September 2016.

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