Published Friday, Aug. 19, 2011 | 6:38 a.m.
Updated Friday, Aug. 19, 2011 | 9 a.m.
CARSON CITY – The jobless rate in Clark County has climbed for the fourth consecutive month, hitting 14 percent in July, the state Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation reported today.
“It’s clear that unemployment figures are moving in the wrong direction and that is especially troubling for the thousands of Nevadans seeking employment,” Gov. Brian Sandoval said.
Statewide unemployment rose from 12.4 percent in June to 12.9 percent in July with 169,400 out of work.
Bill Anderson, chief economist for the department, said “Many barometers utilized to judge the health of Nevada’s economy such as taxable sales, visitor volume and gaming win are pointing upward.
“Unfortunately, this good news has not translated into improvement in the health of the state’s labor market as a whole,” Anderson said.
The 14 percent jobless rate in the Las Vegas area compares to 13.8 percent in June, but it’s down from 15.7 percent in July 2010. There were an estimated 133,300 jobless in July.
Despite the increase in the jobless rate in Southern Nevada, the number of employed rose to 816,100, compared to 811,700 in June.
For the fourth straight month, construction employment increased, to 39,900, which is 500 more than June. Employment in trade, transportation and utilities increased by 600 workers to 142,300.
The number working in hotels and casinos dropped to 161,100, or 200 less than in June in Clark County. Employment in manufacturing fell by 100 workers to 18,400.
The jobless rate held steady in Washoe County at 13 percent but rose one-tenth of a percent in Carson City to 12.6 percent. The nation’s unemployment rate was 9.2 percent.
Anderson said there was improvement in the tourist-gaming economy.
“Through the first seven months of this year, leisure and hospitality payrolls have grown by 6,800 relative to a year ago,” he said.
He said the decline in the jobless rate from 14.9 percent statewide in December 2010 to 12.1 percent in May was encouraging. But he added that the drop was the result of a declining labor force coupled with a flat employment trend.
“In both June and July, the drop in the labor force has shown signs of leveling off, helping to push the unemployment rate up,” Anderson said.