Colorado Employment Situation - November 2018

For Immediate Release
Date: December 21, 2018 - 8:00 A.M.
Contact: Office of Government and Public Relations
Phone: Bill Thoennes at (303) 318-8004 or Cher Haavind at (303) 318-8003
Fax: (303) 318-8070

US and Colorado Nonfarm Payroll Jobs - Over the year growthEmployers in Colorado added 1,800 nonfarm payroll jobs from October to November for a total of 2,749,800 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs increased 700 and government increased 1,100. October estimates were revised up to 2,748,000, and the over the month change from September to October was an increase of 5,700 rather than the originally estimated increase of 4,800.

According to the survey of households, the unemployment rate increased one-tenth of a percentage point from October to November to 3.3 percent. The number of people actively participating in the labor force increased 7,400 over the month to 3,108,600 and the number of people reporting themselves as employed increased 3,200 to 3,006,200. The larger increase in the labor force than in total employment caused the number of unemployed to increase 4,200 and the unemployment rate to increase to 3.3 percent. The national unemployment rate remained unchanged over the same period at 3.7 percent.

Over the year, the average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls decreased from 33.4 to 33.2 hours and average hourly earnings increased from $27.94 to $29.46.

The largest over the month private sector job gains were in professional and business services and trade, transportation, and utilities. The largest over the month declines were in education and health services, leisure and hospitality, financial activities, and construction.

Over the year, nonfarm payroll jobs increased 69,100, with an increase of 62,200 in the private sector and an increase of 6,900 in government. The largest private sector job gains were in professional and business services, trade, transportation, and utilities, and leisure and hospitality. No sectors declined over the year.

Over the year, the unemployment rate is up three-tenths of a percentage point from 3.0 percent. The number of Coloradans participating in the labor force increased 77,300, total employment increased 67,100 and the number of unemployed increased 10,200. The national unemployment rate declined from 4.1 percent in November 2017 to 3.7 percent in November 2018.

All Colorado estimates from the establishment and household surveys, including greater geographic detail, are available at: Estimates for all states and the nation are available at:

The December 2018 Colorado Employment Situation will be released at 8:00 AM on Friday, January 18, 2019. The full schedule of release dates for calendar year 2018 estimates is available at

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.