Colorado first-time unemployment claims drop below 10,000 for first time in months

DENVER — An additional 9,882 people filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending June 19, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment said, bringing that weekly figure below 10,000 for the first time in months.

An additional 234 self-employed and gig workers applied for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance in the period compared with the week prior, bringing the week’s number to 10,385. A total of 122,343 claimants have requested those federal benefits for workers traditionally not eligible for state-level unemployment over the past 14 weeks.

In a call with reporters Thursday, CDLE senior economist Ryan Gedney said the first-time claimant trends are hard to predict, and he’s looking at the data on a week-by-week basis, but said the drop in new claimants is partially due to the slowdown of mass layoffs since the early weeks of the pandemic.

The figure for continuing claims was at 258,400 Coloradans in the week ending June 13, continuing a see-saw pattern where that rate has generally ranged between the 243,000 to 265,000 range every other week.

Colorado distributed $90.4 million in regular unemployment-insurance payments in the week, down from $93.1 million the prior week. Overall, the state has paid out $1.077 billion out of its trust fund since the start of the year, bringing it closer to the $1.1 billion it had in its coffers on Jan. 1.

Gedney said there’s approximately $450 million in the fund right now with one week left to go in the state’s fiscal year, signalling optimism on how long the state’s trust fund will last before going insolvent under immense unemployment pressure.

“That is a lot higher than we anticipated than a month or a month and a half ago, and that should extend solvency of the trust fund to possibly late August to early September,” he said.

Nationwide, the U.S. Department of Labor said 1.48 million Americans filed for first-time unemployment benefits, a drop of 60,000 from the week prior but more than forecasted. About 19.52 million Americans are on continuing benefits.

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DENVER — An additional 9,882 people filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending June 19, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment said, bringing that weekly figure below 10,000 for the first time in months.

An additional 234 self-employed and gig workers applied for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance in the period compared with the week prior, bringing the week’s number to 10,385. A total of 122,343 claimants have requested those federal benefits for workers traditionally not eligible for state-level unemployment over the past 14 weeks.

In a call with reporters Thursday, CDLE senior economist Ryan Gedney said the first-time claimant trends are hard to predict, and he’s looking at the data on a week-by-week basis, but said the drop in new claimants is partially due to the slowdown of mass layoffs since the early weeks of the pandemic.

The figure for continuing claims was at 258,400 Coloradans in the week ending June 13, continuing a see-saw pattern where that rate has generally ranged between the 243,000 to 265,000 range every other week.

Colorado distributed $90.4 million in regular unemployment-insurance payments in the week, down from $93.1 million the prior week. Overall, the state has paid out $1.077 billion out of its trust fund since the start of the year, bringing it closer to the $1.1 billion it had in its coffers on Jan. 1.

Gedney said there’s approximately $450 million in the fund right now with one week left to go in the state’s fiscal year, signalling optimism on how long the state’s trust…