Friday, April 19, 2013

March Recovery Watch

Colorado unemployment rate drops for tenth straight month, state economy continues to strengthen

The most recent economic data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show yet another slight decrease in Colorado’s unemployment rate from 7.2 percent in February to 7.1 percent in March. That marks the lowest unemployment rate since January 2009. The small decline in unemployment is a result of continued, albeit slight, improvement in the labor market. In March, about 1,200 workers entered the labor force and the number of employed Coloradans increased by about 5,000. Colorado’s unemployment rate remains below the national rate, which also fell in March.

The unemployment rate in Colorado decreased for the tenth consecutive month in March. The rate fell 0.1 percentage points for the second straight month. (See Figure 1.) The unemployment rate in March 2013 was more than one percentage point lower than it was in March 2012 and is the lowest unemployment rate since January of 2009 when the unemployment rate was 6.7 percent. However, Colorado’s unemployment rate is still three percentage points higher than when the recession began in December 2007. Nationally, the unemployment rate also declined slightly from February to March moving from 7.7 percent to 7.6 percent. The national unemployment rate of 7.6 in March is the lowest since December of 2008 when the rate was 7.3 percent.

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In the latest edition of Colorado Recovery Watch, CCLP policy analyst 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.

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