Colorado Employment Situation - December 2019
For immediate release
Date: January 24, 2020 - 8:00AM
Contact: Office of Government, Policy and Public Relations
Amelia Tenne at (303) 318-8004 or Cher Haavind at (303) 318-8003
Employers in Colorado added 1,400 nonfarm payroll jobs from November to December for a total of 2,803,500 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs increased 1,100 and government increased 300. November estimates were revised up to 2,802,100, and the over the month change from October to November was an increase of 9,400 rather than the originally estimated increase of 4,100.
According to the survey of households, the unemployment rate decreased one-tenth of a percentage point from November to December to 2.5 percent. This is the lowest unemployment rate for Colorado since the series began in 1976.
The number of people actively participating in the labor force increased 6,000 over the month to 3,176,600 and the number of people reporting themselves as employed increased 8,100 to 3,096,400, causing the number of unemployed to decrease 2,100 and the unemployment rate to decline to 2.5 percent. The national unemployment rate was unchanged in December at 3.5 percent.
Over the year, the average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 33.6 hours and average hourly earnings increased from $29.88 to $30.77.
The largest over the month private sector job gains were in education and health services and trade, transportation, and utilities. The largest over the month decline was in financial activities.
Over the year, nonfarm payroll jobs increased 56,600, with an increase of 47,000 in the private sector and an increase of 9,600 in government. The largest private sector job gains were in professional and business services, education and health services, and trade, transportation, and utilities. Mining and logging declined over the year.
Over the year, the unemployment rate is down one and one-tenth of a percentage point from 3.6 percent in December 2018. The number of Coloradans participating in the labor force increased 47,900, total employment increased 81,200 and the number of unemployed decreased 33,300. The national unemployment rate declined from 3.9 percent in December 2018 to 3.5 percent in December 2019.
All Colorado estimates from the establishment and household surveys, including greater geographic detail, are available at: colmigateway.com. Estimates for all states and the nation are available at: bls.gov.
The January 2020 Colorado Employment Situation will be released at 8:00 AM on Monday, March 16, 2020. Revised statewide estimates for 2019 and 2018 and some updated local information will also be released. The full schedule of release dates for calendar year 2020 estimates is available at colmigateway.com.
Nonfarm payroll jobs estimates are based on a survey of business establishments and government agencies, and are intended to measure the number of jobs, not the number of people employed. Other series based on this survey include private sector average weekly hours, average hourly earnings and average weekly earnings.
The unemployment rate, labor force, labor force participation, total employment and the number of unemployed are based on a survey of households. The total employment estimate derived from this survey is intended to measure the number of people employed.
The business establishment survey covers about seven times the number of households surveyed and is therefore considered a more reliable indicator of economic conditions. Because the estimates are based on two separate surveys, one measuring jobs by worksite and the other measuring persons employed and unemployed by household, estimates based on these surveys may provide seemingly conflicting results.