Jobless rate dips to 12.2% in Nov. | NevadaAppeal.com
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Jobless rate dips to 12.2% in Nov.

Nevada’s unemployment rate fell to 12.2 percent in November – 2.2 percent lower than November 2010 and a half percent less than just a month earlier.

That’s the raw rate. Seasonally adjusted, the rate is 13 percent, but that’s still the lowest in many months and the first decrease since May.

Even so, there still are 171,800 Nevadans looking for jobs.

The problem is worse among African-Americans and Hispanics. Unemployment for blacks is 21.6 percent. For Hispanics, it’s 14.9 percent.

“This month’s unemployment number, while still unacceptably high, shows that we are starting to see steady increases in hiring,” said Gov. Brian Sandoval in a statement.

In Carson City, the unemployment rate dipped to 11.7 percent from 12 percent in October.

There were similar decreases around the state including a six-tenths decrease in Las Vegas to 12.5 percent and a half-percent drop in Reno/ Sparks to 11.6 percent.

Elko remains the lowest reporting area in the state with a rate of just 6.6 percent because of the ongoing mining boom.

Bill Anderson, chief economist for the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, said total employment grew for the fifth straight month, adding 1,300 jobs. Total employment is up year over year by 12,600 jobs to just less than 1.23 million.

Carson City, however, is down 500 year-over-year with 3,200 of 27,400 in the workforce looking for a job.

The Reno-Sparks reporting area has 25,000 of 215,700 out of work and Las Vegas has 117,800 looking for a job in a workforce of 945,300.

Churchill County reported an unemployment rate of 9.5 percent for November with 1,180 of 12,450 out of work. Douglas County’s 13.3 percent rate represents 2,789 jobless in a labor force of 20,930.

Anderson said although the overall rate is coming down, it only counts unemployed workers actively seeking a job. He said when those out of work but not actively seeking a job are counted along with the under employed, the rate is actually 23.3 percent.

Average weekly hours worked improved this year, rising from 34.1 hours per week to 34.7. The recent increase shows that employers are able to offer more work because of increased demand for goods and services, Anderson said. 

Seasonal retail employment rose 3,300 in November while leisure and hospitality employment declined by 4,300 jobs. While business and professional services lost 200 jobs, temporary help services added 500.

State government employment was flat while the federal government cut 200 jobs and local government added 300.

During the past 12 months, education and health services added an average of 400 jobs per month. 

Construction employment added 1,000 jobs in November but the total industry workforce is about the same as a year ago.