Wednesday, September 28, 2011

August unemployment: Grand Junction, Pueblo, Colo Springs and Greeley remain above national rate

The BLS released its report today on unemployment in 372 metro areas in the US. The data for Colorado is not different from the statewide report already released by the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. The chart with local unemployment rates is here.

Nevertheless, the report does provide some comparisons with other metro areas in the nation. The map on the last page shows that the Colorado Springs, Grand Junction, Pueblo and Greeley metro areas all have unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) above the national rate of 9.1 percent (not seasonally adjusted). The Fort Collins-Loveland area, the Denver area and the Boulder area all have unemployment rates below the national rate.

The map:

Statewide, Colorado's unemployment rate (seasonally adjusted) remains below the national rate for the second month in a row following a three month period(January-March 2011) during which Colorado's unemployment rate was higher than the nation's. Prior to January 2011, the unemployment rate in Colorado had been below the national rate for several years.

The Boulder and Fort Collins areas have posted better unemployment rates than the nation for quite some time. Denver has in the past several months dropped below the national rate. The unemployment rates in the other metro areas (Greeley, C. Springs, Pueblo, Grand Junct.) have generally been above the national rate since the recession began in Colorado in 2008.

National comparisons remain important insofar as perceptions of the local job market drive household creation in Colorado. As long as Colorado is perceived as being a better job market than many metro areas in the nation, such a perceptions will foster household creation and population growth in the state.