Nevada jobless claims up after 31 months on decline
Posted By Josh Mabry, Continuous News Manager - email
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -
July unemployment numbers released Thursday show Nevada slowly recovering from the recession, according to the state's chief economist.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits in July 2012 were 0.2 percent higher than in July 2011. The percentage ends a 31-month trend of declining claims.
An initial claim is the first step in the process when filing for unemployment benefits. A steady decline in the number of initial claims could show Nevada is gradually recovering from the recession, according to Bill Anderson, chief economist for the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation.
"The Research and Analysis Bureau will continue monitoring information as it becomes available in an effort to assess whether July's results reflect the beginning of a new trend, or if the increase was due to one-time only factors," Anderson said. "For instance, we do know that claims activity during the first week of August was down 12.8 percent from a year ago."
According to Anderson, the small increase in initial claims is also further evidence that the rapid pace of declining unemployment insurance activity seen in 2010 and early 2011 is ending. He says claim activity may be settling on a much more gradual pace of decline overall, with an average decline of just 6.9 percent through July 2012, compared to 16.2 percent for the same period in 2011.
Because initial claims are related to people entering unemployment, they can be considered a leading indicator of changes in overall employment levels, according to Anderson. He says the number of people losing their jobs continues to fall, an important step to establishing steady growth in employment overall.
At the same time the rate of claims and job loss remains elevated, and the pace of employment growth is likely to remain slower than what Nevada was accustomed to prior to the recession, according to Anderson.
In July 18,690 initial claims were filed compared to 18,650 in July 2011. During the recession, initial claims peaked at 36,414 in December 2008.
Copyright 2012 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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