Jobless rate jumps sharply

Nye County’s jobless rate jumped in January as more workers apparently re-entered the labor force looking for work.

The county’s unemployment rate was 9.4 percent, up from 7.8 percent in December, according to the state Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. The report said 1,533 county residents were unemployed in January, compared to the 1,341 a month prior.

However, the number is lower that the 10.1 percent, or 1,739 unemployed residents, reported in January 2014.

Nye County has a current labor force of 16,245, down more than 1,000 workers who lived in the county a year ago.

The state’s jobless rate grew to 7.1 percent in January, up from 7 percent in December. The Las Vegas jobless rate climbed to 7.5 percent from 7 percent.

These increases might not be bad news, but a signal that people are trying to re-enter workforce as the economy improves.

“As the labor market has improved, it’s acting as a signal to people that their likelihood of finding a job is improving,” said Bill Anderson, chief economist of the employment department. “As a result, we are starting to see people re-enter the labor force.”

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