The most recent economic data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show a decrease in the state unemployment rate as employment growth outpaced the growth in the state’s labor force. The Colorado unemployment rate was down 0.1 percentage points from 8 percent in September to 7.9 percent in October. According to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics survey, the number of people employed in Colorado increased by more than 7,000 for the second straight month. The National unemployment rate rose slightly during the month of October, to match the Colorado unemployment rate at 7.9 percent. The national rate edged upward despite an increase in the number of people employed nationwide. Also, enrollment in public assistance programs such as Medicaid, CHP+ and SNAP continued to increase in the month of September.
The unemployment rate in Colorado decreased for the third straight month in October. The rate fell 0.1 percentage points, from 8 percent in September to 7.9 percent in October. (Figure 1) This is the first time the Colorado unemployment rate has dropped below 8 percent since April of this year, and is 0.2 percentage points lower than November of 2011. Nationwide, the unemployment rate increased slightly during the month of October to match the Colorado rate at 7.9 percent. The increase in the national unemployment rate notwithstanding, employment levels in Colorado and across the nation increased and more people resumed their search for work, a sign that the job market may be improving.
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In the latest edition of Colorado Recovery Watch, Rice Fellow Andrew Ball examines a range of data showing where the state of Colorado stands on the road to economic recovery.
Colorado Recovery Watch is a monthly snapshot of economic data, with a special focus on jobs and public-assistance programs. Read it online, along with other analysis of jobs and economic security from the Colorado Center on Law and Policy.