Statewide unemployment down to 6.5 percent in Nevada |

Statewide unemployment down to 6.5 percent in Nevada

Geoff Dornan

Nevada’s statewide unemployment rate fell three tenths of a percent from June to July, finishing the month at 6.5 percent.

That’s in contrast to the seasonally adjusted rate which employment security officials say actually increased a tenth to 6.5 percent.

Gov. Brian Sandoval touted the news saying job growth has almost regained all of the 175,000 jobs lost at the height of the recession. Most of that job growth is in the same industries that were hardest hit by the economic downturn — leisure/hospitality and construction.

Bill Anderson, chief economist for the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, pointed out Nevada’s job growth continues to outpace the recovery of the nation as a whole but the state’s rate is still well above the 4.9 percent jobless rate nationwide.

Statewide, there are now 92,800 people looking for work.

That number has actually increased nearly every month this calendar year but Anderson has said that’s because people who had given up are again looking for work, increasing the labor pool. Nevada has 1.44 million in the labor force.

The Reno area continues to perform better than most parts of the state, reporting just 5.5 percent seeking work in July. That amounts to 12,800 in a workforce of 233,400.

In Carson City, the percentage of people looking for work went down four tenths over the same month, also finishing July at 6.5 percent. That is the lowest rate for the capital in several years.

Las Vegas finished July at 6.7 percent.

Churchill County reported 6.4 percent of its 10,380 workforce still jobless. For Churchill, 2016 has been a roller coaster rise. The county started in July 2015 at 7.1 percent but followed that with two months at 5.8 percent and two more at 6 percent before bouncing up to 6.7 percent in June.

Douglas County is at 5.9 percent as of July.

Lyon County finished July at 8.1 percent.