Boulder County unemployment rate at 4.4%

BOULDER – Unemployment rates in Boulder and Broomfield continue to shrink in December as Colorado once again recorded its lowest rate since December 2008, according to a report released Tuesday by the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.

Boulder County’s unemployment rate slid from 4.7 percent in November to 4.4 percent in December, more than a full percentage point below December 2012’s 5.5 percent rate. The county had 172,879 people employed and 8,027 looking for work.

Broomfield County’s jobless rate dropped from 5.5 percent in November to 5.3 percent in December, with 29,952 people employed and 1,665 looking for work. That’s compared to the county’s December 2012 rate of 6.6 percent.

Boulder and Broomfield counties’ unemployment rates dropped for the sixth month in a row.

Colorado added 2,200 nonfarm payroll jobs in December. The state’s unemployment rate, meanwhile, dropped from 6.5 percent to 6.2 percent, just a shade above the December 2008 rate of 6.1 percent. Colorado’s labor force decreased by 5,400 people in December and the number of people reporting themselves as employed increased 2,600, combining to account for the unemployment dip. Nationally, the unemployment rate for December was 6.7 percent.

Colorado added 43,900 jobs for the year in 2013, with the biggest private sector gains coming in professional and business services, education and health services, and construction. Financial activities and information both declined.

Colorado’s unemployment rate declined more than a percentage point for the year, dropping from 7.5 percent in December 2012. The national rate dropped by nearly the same amount, from 7.9 percent.

Statewide, Cheyenne and Yuma counties on the Eastern Plains boasted the lowest December unemployment rates at 3.2 percent. Costilla County in southern Colorado had the highest rate at 12.3 percent.

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