Further Signs The Vegas Economy is Weakening

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NEVADA’S UNEMPLOYMENT RATE IS SHAPED LIKE A SNAKE LIFTING ITS HEAD

AUGUST 19, 2010: The unemployment rate in the Las Vegas area in July rose to 14.8 percent, the 19th consecutive month of double-digit joblessness. The number of people employed in government, and hotels and casinos in the Las Vegas area dropped during the month. Statewide, the jobless rate inched up to 14.3 percent, continuing to be the highest in the nation. It was the 16th straight month the rate has increased to a record high according to the Las Vegas Sun.

Losing jobs were the government sector, construction and professional and business services, with the employment-services field in particular cutting posts. Trade, transportation and utilities and mining were among the categories that added positions states the LVRJ.

On the National Level, taken together with new inventory and construction data, this means that the second-quarter growth figure may turn out to have been just 1.2%, rather than the first estimate of 2.4%. And it may be even worse; one Barclays analyst thinks the actual figure could be as low as 0.3%. Forecasts for the rest of the year are also being nudged down as a result. Macroeconomic Advisers adjusted its expected third-quarter growth rate to 2.4% from 3% after the trade data appeared. A double dip into renewed recession still looks unlikely (the chances are perhaps 25-30%, according to a Goldman Sachs estimate), but a slowdown in growth to near 1% is closer to contraction than most would like states the Economist.

In one year, commercial real estate has seen both a drop in prices and a doubling up in delinquency rates, research analytics firms tracking the market find. Price values are down to nearly half the levels seen at the peak of the market, while the risk of default is rising and the commercial real estate foreclosure book continues to add pages claims Housing Wire.

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