CARSON CITY, Nevada — Nevada's unemployment rate dropped to 9.3 percent in September to its lowest level since December 2008, despite the loss of 8,800 jobs compared with the same month a year ago, the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation reported Monday.
The jobless rate fell from 9.5 percent in August.
Bill Anderson, chief economist for Nevada's Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, said the number of jobs in Nevada is up 1.4 percent over the past year and 1.9 percent for the first nine months of the year.
Las Vegas employment fell by 7,600 jobs from August to September, but is up 1.9 percent year over year. Reno-Sparks employment fell by 600 jobs month over month, but posted a total gain of 0.5 percent relative to last year. Carson City added 200 jobs in September, its best gain since June.
Anderson said separate surveys are used to calculate job losses and the unemployment rate. Because of the 16-day federal government shutdown in October, unemployment rates for the state's metropolitan areas won't be available until later this week. Another report will be issued Nov. 22.
He said that discrepancy explains how the state's overall unemployment rate could decrease while job losses increased.
"A more accurate measure of the health of the economy comes from examining the annual trends rather than the month-to-month activity," Anderson said. "Overall, the state is moving in a positive direction with the unemployment rate continuing to fall and employers continuing to add jobs."
Monday's report showed the state's largest job sector, leisure and hospitality, added 200 jobs over the month, while 100 construction jobs were added. On the flip side, the trade, transportation and utilities sector lost 600 jobs since August.
Professional and business services lost the most jobs, 7,500, representing a 4.3 percent decline since September 2012.
Gov. Brian Sandoval said the report shows Nevada's labor market is improving and strides are being made in economic development, but momentum needs to continue.