The number of Nevadans back at work increased by 3,400 in September but that is a much slower increase than August.
“I’m encouraged to see that employment continues to pick up and that unemployment has gone down,” said DETR Economist Dave Schmidt. “Employment gains slowed sharply for the second month in a row as the labor market continues to shift from a rapid policy-driven rebound to a more traditional recovery.”
Nonetheless, he said an improvement of seven tenths of a percent in the unemployment rate is rapid by historical standards. That rate decreased from 13.3 percent to 12.6 percent over the month, far lower than the high of 30.1 percent at the height of the economic shutdown.
That record jobless rate was the result of the state orders that closed most businesses when the pandemic hit the Silver State. It fell rapidly after businesses began to reopen.
Since then, he said total employment has regained almost half of the 287,300 jobs lost between February and April. That, however, means there are still 127,600 fewer people employed than at the end of September 2019.
Nevada remains one of the states hardest hit by the pandemic. Like Nevada, the other hard hit states, including Hawaii and Florida, rely on tourism and hospitality businesses for a large segment of their economy.
In September, 34,370 initial claims for unemployment benefits were filed in Nevada. That is 15,225 or 30.7 percent fewer than August.