Report: Lost jobs in West won’t return for 7 years | NevadaAppeal.com
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Report: Lost jobs in West won’t return for 7 years

BRIAN DUGGAN
bduggan@nevadaappeal.com

At the current rate of job production in the Intermountain West region, it could take as long as seven years to reach pre-recession levels of employment.

That’s among the latest findings in a report released by the Brookings Mountain West, a UNLV think tank, on Tuesday.

Job growth increased by just 0.3 percent in the second quarter for the largest 10 metropolitan areas in the region, which includes Nevada, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico.

As for the 21 smaller metros in the region, including Reno and Carson City, the second quarter was another bruising experience.

“Over the three year period to June 2010, unemployment has – unsurprisingly – risen in every metro,” the report said. “Yuma (Ariz.), Reno and Carson City have been the hardest-hit places, posting unemployment rate increases of over

9 percentage points.”

Meanwhile, other small metros like Logan, Utah and Boulder, Colo., have seen unemployment rates increase by just

2.9 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively.

But despite the poor performance in jobs creation, five out of the 10 largest metros have recovered to the level of economic output to pre-recession levels.

And while the region has nearly twice the rate of real estate-owned properties than the national level – 8.9 per 1,000 mortgageable homes compared to

3.99 nationally – the report also said home prices were largely undervalued in most regional markets, including Las Vegas.

Reno home values, which are already down more than 50 percent from their peak, fell another 5 percent in the second quarter, according to the report.

Home values in Carson City are down about 43 percent from their peak.