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Unemployment claims fall for 4th straight week

Finalized data from the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation show initial claims for unemployment insurance totaled 15,607 for the week ending May 23, down 2,230 claims, or 12.5 percent, compared to last week’s total of 17,837. This is the fourth consecutive week of declines in regular initial claims. Through the week ending May 23, there have been 495,840 initial claims filed in 2020, 474,488 of which have come in the last 11 weeks.

Continued claims, which represent the current number of insured unemployed workers filing weekly for unemployment insurance benefits, fell to 343,030. This is a decline from the previous week of 26,011 claims, or 7.0 percent. The state’s insured unemployment rate, which is the ratio of continued claims in a week to the total number of jobs covered by the unemployment insurance system, was 24.9 percent in the week, a decline of 1.8 percentage points.

It should be noted that the calculation of the insured unemployment rate is different from that of the state’s total unemployment rate.

The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program for the self-employed, 1099 contract workers and gig workers saw 37,567 initial claims filed in the week, the first full week in which the program was available. A total of 172,346 PUA continued claims were filed in the week, though it should be noted that this figure includes multiple weeks of claims and is the first week of available data.

Nevada’s Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, which provides up to 13 weeks of benefits to individuals who have exhausted their regular unemployment benefits, saw 4,745 claims filed in the week.

Nationally, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted regular initial claims was 2,123,000, a decline of 323,000 claims from the previous week’s revised level of 2,446,000. The national insured unemployment rate for the week ending May 16 was 14.5 percent, a decrease of 2.5 percentage points from the previous week. The national rate is reported with a one-week lag.

To file for unemployment in Nevada, visit ui.nv.gov/css.html. People unable to file online may file via telephone by calling a UI Claims Call Center 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m.-noon Saturday. The Southern UI Call Center can be reached at 702-486-0350, while rural areas can call 888-890-8211. Claimants are highly encouraged to use the internet to file their UI claims, as it reserves the phone lines for individuals who are not able or do not have the necessary resources to file online.

Online filing during non-peak hours, such as early mornings, at night or weekends is also highly recommended. To continue to receive benefits, claimants must file weekly. Claimants with last names starting with A-K are asked to file Sundays. Last names L-R are asked to file Mondays. Last names S-Z are asked to file Tuesday. Wednesday through Saturday are open for all to initiate or renew claims online.

For information on PUA claims, visit detr.nv.gov/pua#. Individuals will be able to file online at www.employnv.gov or call the PUA Call Center at 800-603-9681.

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