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Colorado economy outperforming most of the nation


Aug 14, 2022

By Kaia Hofmeister

Employment in Colorado remains above pre-recession levels, but some industries in the state are still behind.

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - Employment in Colorado remains above pre-recession levels, but some industries in the state are still behind, according to a report released today by the University of Colorado Boulder and Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold.

The Quarterly Business and Economic Indicators report is put together by the Leeds Business Research Division (BRD) at CU Boulder in collaboration with the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office. The most recent report for the Quarter 2 of 2022 reveals that Colorado recorded over 39,000 new entity filings, increasing year-over-year by 0.5% but decreasing seasonally 9.7% from the Quarter 1.

“While Coloradans’ resilience has been tested, today’s report shows we’re moving in the right direction. Colorado’s economy continues to shine even with uncertainty in the national economy. Our business sector has shown ongoing resilience,” said Secretary Griswold. “As Secretary of State I will continue to work to ensure Colorado remains one of the most business-friendly states in the nation.”

The mixed data is also reflective in employment. Colorado has recorded the 10th-best employment recovery in the nation by adding over 400,000 jobs between May 2020 and June 2022, after losing over 375,000 jobs in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, government, mining, education and health services, and leisure and hospitality still remain below pre-pandemic employment levels.

Colorado is projected to add over 100,000 jobs in 2022. The state’s labor force is at a record level, growing 2.6% year-over-year in June. The labor force participation rate ranked second highest in June, totaling 69.5%.

In June, unemployment in the Colorado dropped to 3.4%, just under the national unemployment rate of 3.5%.

“Our most recent analysis shows Colorado ranks above average in employment, labor force, income and GDP compared to the rest of the nation,” said Rich Wobbekind, senior economist and BRD faculty director. “Still, the most recent Leeds Business Confidence Index signals business leaders are cautious heading into Quarter 3 and Quarter 4 due to inflation, interest rates, worker shortages and other factors.”

In Colorado, home price growth remained elevated in the Quarter 1, increasing 21.6% year-over-year. Retail gasoline prices skyrocketed to $5.00 per gallon in late June, but has decreased 11% in the five weeks since.

You can find monthly information on key economic statistics and trends that impact the state on the Colorado Business and Economic Indicator Dashboard, launched by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office in collaboration with BRD.

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