UNLV political science professor John Tuman is available to speak about the findings of his new study examining the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on labor market conditions in Nevada.

The research, published last week in the Early View section of the Journal of Labor and Society, provides a preliminary look at unemployment claims in early 2020.

The analysis found that the pandemic caused a steep rise in Silver State unemployment and in the number of jobless workers covered by unemployment insurance. However, the findings suggest that the largest growth in initial weekly unemployment claims may have already occurred. 

Workers in Nevada, where the statewide economy relies heavily on the leisure and hospitality industries, have been at elevated risk for unemployment — and the study found that Latino and Asian workers will likely find themselves out of work at higher levels.

The study also suggests that a history of inadequate financing has undermined the administrative capacity of the state's unemployment agency to process new claims. Likewise, the volume of continuing claims raises questions about the financial solvency of Nevada's unemployment insurance trust fund.