Nevada’s unemployment rate staying around 4 percent | NevadaAppeal.com

Nevada’s unemployment rate staying around 4 percent

Nevada’s unemployment rate continued at 4 percent for September even though the total number of workers in the state has grown nearly 75,000 over the past year.

For September, the state Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation said there were 1.25 million employed in the state and just 52,000 looking for work.

“This means that job seekers can pick and choose from jobs because there are many different jobs being offered,” said Tina Grefrath, regional manager for Nevada JobConnect. “There are only some difficult areas in construction. There aren’t as many new homes being built.”

In contrast, retail hiring is going up for the holiday season.

Nevada’s total work force now numbers just over 1.3 million.

Those percentages are well below the national rate – 4.6 percent – and California’s jobless number – 4.9 percent.

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The September report shows 889,000 workers in the Las Vegas area, which also reported just 4 percent without a job.

The percentage was even lower in Washoe and Elko counties. In Washoe, 3.7 percent of 224,200 in the work force were jobless. In Elko, which is enjoying a revitalized mining industry, 3.5 percent of 25,800 in the work force were out of work. Washoe’s work force has grown 13,100 in the past year, Elko’s by more than 1,000.

Carson City typically has a higher percentage out of work than the rest of the state. In September, the capital reported 4.4 percent or 1,200 of 28,500 workers without jobs. That is higher than the 4.1 percent rate Carson City reported in September 2005.

The total work force in the Capital has grown 1,300 over the past year.

Because Nevada’s economy is strong, department director Terry Johnson said no increase was necessary this year in the amount businesses pay to the employment security trust fund, which pays unemployment benefits.

Cynthia Jones, administrator of the Employment Security Division, said the trust fund should reach $850 million by the end of 2007.

• Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at gdornan@nevadaappeal.com or 687-8750.