Tuesday, April 12, 2011

State of Working Colorado: Industry employment – winners and losers

While overall job growth in Colorado did not keep up with population growth during the past decade, changes in employment varied widely by industry.

Education and health services proved to be the strongest large state industries this decade. Combined, they have seen consistent, strong growth in employment that has continued since the economic downturn. Government employment growth has also been strong. That was to be expected in a decade with two recessions—demand for government services is counter-cyclical, meaning demand increases during economic downturn. Both industries were large players in the state economy, employing 12 percent and 18 percent of Colorado’s workforce, respectively.

Hardest hit in the state were manufacturing and construction, both of which experienced large declines in employment since 2000. Colorado’s construction sector saw most of its employment losses kicked off by the 2001 and 2007 recessions, whereas manufacturing has seen a more steady decline through the decade.

For more insights, including detailed policy recommendations for enhancing economic security for all Coloradans, check out the State of Working Colorado 2010.

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