The construction industry continued to be the top industry for job growth in Nevada in September and the state’s unemployment rate fell again to its lowest level since July 2008. The latest monthly employment report from Nevada’s Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation (DETR) did reveal some volatility in the labor market.
The 12.8% seasonally-adjusted job growth in construction over the last year remains the highest among any of the state’s ten supersectors. Overall, employment in the industry has increased by 7,300 since September 2013 and was up by 800 jobs during September 2014.
Specialty Trade Contractors in Nevada added 500 jobs, an increase of 1.2% over the last year. Employment by this subsector rose by 700 during September.
The construction industry added 1,200 jobs in Clark County, an increase of 2.8%, during the last year, with a net gain of 400 construction jobs occurring during September. Employment by Specialty Trade Contractors in the County remained flat in September but has fallen by 6.1%, a loss of 1,900 jobs, since September 2013. Employment in Washoe and Storey Counties’ construction industry increased by 600 in September and is up 9.1%, a total of 1,000 jobs, in the last year.
Figures for subsectors of the construction industry and for counties are not seasonally adjusted.
Overall the state’s unemployment rate fell to 7.3%, its lowest level in more than six years.
“I am pleased to see the Silver State’s unemployment rate continue to show improvement. We are growing in key economic sectors and more Nevadans are once again finding good jobs,” said Governor Brian Sandoval. “Our economy is showing positive signs, but we must remain diligent in our economic and workforce development efforts.”
This month’s report reveals a little bit of volatility in the labor market. Even though the unemployment rate fell, employment gains were actually less than would be expected so Nevada shows a loss of jobs during September on a seasonally-adjusted basis.
Although employment increased by 6,800 during the month, a gain of 8,600 jobs was expected. As a result, the seasonal adjustment displays a loss of 1,800 jobs during September.
However, September was the 45th month in a row of year-over-year job gains, according to the DETR report. September’s job levels are about 38,000 higher than a year ago.
“Through the first nine months of this year, job levels are trending a bit in excess of 40,000 higher than a year ago,” [DETR chief economist Bill] Anderson said. “Should these trends hold through the rest of the year, we will have added about 100,000 new jobs over the 2010-2014 period. To put these gains in perspective, the State lost about 175,000 jobs over the 2007-2010 period.”
There were other positive signs in the report. The number of long-term unemployed (27 weeks or more) is at 45,000, about half its level during the height of the recession. During the final quarter of 2013, the last for which such information is available, Nevada showed a net gain of 2,600 jobs due solely to business openings and closings.
According to the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, the Silver State’s economic development efforts in the first half of 2014 resulted in the creation of nearly 2,300 new jobs. The DETR reports that job growth so far in 2014 has been greater than in 48 other states.