California and Nevada’s respective unemployment rates stood at 4.1 and 4.9 percent in November as the Golden State’s labor force (individuals willing and able to work) remains approximately -100,000 smaller than before the COVID-19 pandemic and the Silver State’s job market is entrenched in new-record territory.
The following are the latest year-over-year and month-over November trends published by the California Employment Development Department (EDD) and the Nevada Employment Training and Rehabilitation Department (DETR) — released in mid-December:
California’s November 2022 Employment Numbers
The California report shows the state’s unemployment rate increased to 4.1 percent in November 2022 (from a “readjusted” 4 percent in October 2022). For context, the state’s unemployment rate hit 16.1 percent at one point during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
California employers added 26,800 non-farm monthly payroll jobs in November 2022:
Nevada’s November 2022 Employment Numbers
The Nevada report shows employment in the state is up 5,300 jobs in November 2022, and it’s also up 57,200 jobs from a year ago (a 4 percent annual increase).
Total non-farm employment (payroll and independent-contract jobs combined) remained near a record high of 1.47 million individuals. When it comes to payroll employment specifically, June 2022 was the first month Nevada’s job market finally closed the gap inflicted since the COVID-19 recession in 2020.
Nevada’s November 2022 unemployment rate stands at 4.9 percent (from a “readjusted” 4.6 percent in October), which is up from 3.7 percent in February of 2020 (pre-pandemic economy). For context, the state’s unemployment rate hit 28.2 percent at one point during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
At the local/regional level, Nevada employers added the following jobs in November 2022:
Ongoing Labor Market Perspective
These California and Nevada job market recoveries don’t account for lost ground and opportunity costs coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Specifically in California, the state’s labor force — the pool of individuals willing and able to work — shrunk drastically due to public health restrictions and concerns, policy and employer decisions, the volatile business environment, federal and state financial relief, and worker fluidity in a tight labor market.
Essentially, both California and Nevada job markets may have been even more robust by 2022 if COVID-19 never impacted the economy and policy decisions, assuming no other negative financial or economic events transpired.