LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — According to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation’s (DETR) March 2020 economic report, employment in Nevada is down 4,900 jobs over the month but up 10,600 over the year, a growth rate of 0.8%.
This marks the first time since August 2011 that Nevada has grown at a rate under one percent. The state’s unemployment rate is 6.3% this month, up 2.7 percentage point from February and up 2.2 percentage point when compared to last March.
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DETR’s report also notes that Nevada’s Unemployment Insurance claims saw an increase of 199,482 claims, or 2,125%, from the same month a year ago.
Initial claims are at an all-time high and are nearly six times the previous high set in December 2008, when the State saw 36,414 initial claims.
David Schmidt, the Chief Economist for DETR said:
This month’s report shows the earliest effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Nevada’s economy. Even with a significant increase in unemployment and slowdown in employment growth, it is important to note that our employment and unemployment data is measured the week that includes the 12th day of the month. In March, the week of the 12th was the week before the closure of non-essential business and government offices in Nevada, and therefore does not yet capture what has happened in the economy since then. Even so, the March unemployment rate was the highest it’s been in nearly 5 years and employment growth was the slowest it’s been in almost 9 years. When data for April is released next month, it will reflect the situation this week and we expect trends will decline significantly. Unemployment insurance claims are at an all-time high and weekly claims and payments will also increase as further claims come into the system. As the situation evolves, we will continue to focus on unemployment insurance activity, and post information on our website, NevadaWorkforce.com
Additional March Report Highlights:
- Total employment rose by 0.8 percent over the year, growing at the low end of the range seen over the last year (0.8% - 3.1%).
- Construction added the most jobs out of all sectors, for the 12-month period ending in March 2020, increasing by an average of 6,500 jobs over the same time in the year prior.
- Nevada’s seasonally adjusted employment growth realized 111 consecutive months of year-overyear gains this month.
- This marks the second time since July 2012 that Nevada has grown at a slower rate than the national average.
- The unemployment rate is the highest it’s been since December 2015, nearly five years ago.
- Initial claims are at an all-time high, totaling 208,869 in March.
- Nevada is now ranked ninth in the country in terms of states with the largest percentage increase in unemployment claims from January to April 2020.