Colorado’s jobless rate falls; economy loses jobs

Colorado’s unemployment rate decreased one-tenth of a percentage point in December to 7.6 percent, despite a drop in non-farm payroll jobs, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment said Friday.

Colorado lost 2,400 jobs from November to December, leaving it with 2,316,000 jobs, according to a survey of businesses.

The employment rate decrease stemmed from a larger increase in the number of people reporting their status as employed, according to a separate survey of households. The national unemployment rate remained unchanged at 7.8 percent.

In Larimer County, the non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained flat at 5.9 percent from November to December, but improved two-tenths of a percentage point from December 2011.

Weld County’s non-seasonally adjusted jobless rate increased from 8.2 to 8.4 percent, but declined from 8.7 percent in December 2011.

Statewide, the average workweek for employees on private, non-farm payrolls increased from 34.6 to 35.5 hours year over year, and average hourly earnings increased from $24.20 to $25.26.

The largest private-sector job gain from November to December was in construction. The largest declines came from professional and business services, trade, transportation and utilities, and education and health services.

Non-farm payroll jobs increased 51,300 year over year, with private sector payroll jobs surging 47,600 and government growing 3,700. The largest private sector job gains stemmed from professional and business services, education and health services, and leisure and hospitality.

Information represented the only sector that declined year over year.

The state’s unemployment rate declined year over year three tenths of one percentage point from 7.9 percent in December 2011.

The number of Coloradans participating in the labor force decreased 8,100, total employment decreased 1,200 and the number of unemployed decreased 6,900.

The national unemployment rate declined from 8.5 percent in December 2011 to 7.8 percent in December 2012.


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