The seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate in Nevada dropped to 8.7% in January, the 37th consecutive month of year-over-year job growth, according to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. Employment in the construction industry increased in January from January 2013, though jobs in the industry declined from December 2013.
DETR’s monthly press release also revealed total employment in the Silver State exceeded 1.2 million for the first time since 2008. Total employment peaked at 1,297,300 in May 2007.
The January reading is the 37th straight month of year-over-year growth, with payrolls growing by 89,600 since bottoming out in September 2010. Despite 37 months of job growth, there are still 92,000 fewer jobs on nonfarm payrolls in January than when the recession began.
Seasonally-adjusted employment in the construction industry increased 4.4% (about 2,500 jobs) from January 2013 to January 2014 and 1,200 jobs were added in January from December 2013. The figures before the seasonal adjustments show greater gains from the previous January (4,700 jobs or 9.1%) but a decline of 3,000 jobs from December 2013.
Employment by Specialty Trade Contractors, which is not seasonally-adjusted, increased by 600 (1.7%) from January 2013 but fell by 2,900 in January 2014 from the prior month.
The construction industry added 200 jobs in Clark County from a year earlier although 1,900 jobs were lost in January compared to December 2013. Employment by Specialty Trade Contractors in Clark County fell by 1,000 (3.6%) from the previous January and 1,900 from December 2013.
Construction added 2,000 jobs (a gain of 24.1%) from January 2013 to January 2014 in Washoe and Storey Counties but were down 600 from December. County figures are not seasonally adjusted.
Governor Brian Sandoval touted the job gains in the state.
“I’m pleased that our first report in 2014 brings further signs of economic improvement in Nevada’s labor market,” said Governor Brian Sandoval. “We have continued to have steady growth, and more Nevadans are working again. In the past three years, 60,700 new private sector jobs have been created in our state. While we have seen great improvements in our economy, there is still more work to be done. Growing our economy and creating jobs will continue to be among my highest priorities.”
The DETR release also noted that, after strong gains, new housing construction is showing signs of slowing or leveling off.
During five of the last seven months, fewer seasonally adjusted housing units were started compared to the same period last year. In 2013 as a whole, however, starts increased 24 percent compared to 2012.
The report predicted continued employment gains for 2014.
In 2014, look for retail trade, administrative/support/waste management, and accommodation/food services to reach near their all-time highs. Employment in finance/insurance, local government, real estate/rental/leasing, and construction should make noticeable advances, but are still too far away from their former peak to consider 2014 as a recovery year.
UPDATE: The DETR employment report is also available in video format.