|By Rich Coleman, Las Vegas
SunMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News
April 12, 2011--Las Vegans could be calling it a comeback, according to a new report.
Personal finance magazine Kiplinger included Las Vegas on its list of "11 Comeback Cities for 2011." Using data from Moody's Analytics, Kiplinger listed those cities as "enjoying a surprising and welcome upward bounce" while the country deals with the effects of the downturn.
According to the report, employment in Las Vegas will grow by nearly 3 percent this year after taking a dive in recent years.
The report credits the rise of clean technology and e-commerce for bolstering Las Vegas' best-known industries: hospitality and tourism. It also lauds the city's investment in health care, pointing out the Cleveland Clinic's expansion of the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health downtown. The report also gives credit to online retailer Zappos.com.
While the report predicts a comeback this year, Nevada is still saddled with the nation's highest rates of unemployment and foreclosures -- and local experts aren't expecting a short-term turnaround in those figures. The jobless rate in the Las Vegas area stood at 13.7 percent in February, the 25th consecutive month of double-digit unemployment. The national rate was 8.9 percent.
Other cities on the Kiplinger list included Chattanooga, Tenn.; Nashville; Orlando, Fla.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Charlotte, N.C.; Flint, Mich.; Phoenix; Portland, Ore.; Seattle; and San Jose, Calif.
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