Nevada’s raw unemployment rate dipped to just 4.2 percent in August as all three metropolitan areas reported improvements and total employment grew by 5,400.
That is a three-tenths improvement over July with just 65,200 seeking work in a labor force of 1.55 million.
In Carson City and Reno/Sparks, the jobless rate fell two-tenths. That puts Carson at just 3.9 percent and Reno/Sparks at 3.2 percent. For Carson, that translates to 1,000 job seekers in a labor force of 26,800. In Reno/Sparks, it’s 8,700 looking for work in a pool of 267,200.
Gov. Steve Sisolak said Nevada has now had the nation’s fastest employment growth for 10 straight months. David Schmidt, chief economist for the Department of Employment Training and Rehabilitation, said total employment increased by 3 percent over the year, more than double the national growth rate of 1.4 percent.
“While these labor market measures remain steady, we must keep working to ensure that every family in Nevada sees the benefits of the state’s growth,” Sisolak said in a press release.
Schmidt said even with steady progress in employment measures, there are opportunities for improvement. He said per capita personal income ranks 27th among the states and the rate of voluntary part time employment is just now recovering to pre-recession levels. Nevada’s economy has now grown for 20 consecutive quarters and the number of small businesses is now 79,700 statewide.
Schmidt said the department continues to monitor the labor market for signs of a turning point in light of national economic uncertainty.
Outside the metropolitan reporting areas, western Nevada counties also are doing well.
Churchill County reported a decrease of two-tenths from July through August, finishing the month at 3.9 percent. That translates to 416 people looking for work in a labor pool of 10,683.
Douglas County reported a decrease of one-tenth to 3.9 percent — 919 job seekers out of 23,696 workers.
Lyon County, which has struggled to shake off the effects of the recession, reported an improvement of three-tenths of a percent in August. That puts Lyon a 4.8 percent unemployment with 1,121 looking for work in a labor force of 23,173. That is still one of the state’s highest jobless rates behind only Esmeralda County at 5.2 percent and Nye County at 5.5 percent.
The lowest jobless rate of any reporting area was Elko with just 3.1 percent out of work — 900 in a pool of 29,000.
Compared to last year, 16 of Nevada’s 17 counties have seen unemployment decrease and the one exception, Lander County, was only up one-tenth of a percent.
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