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Unemployment ticks up across Boulder Valley, Northern Colorado

DENVER — The unemployment rate in Colorado ticked up modestly in October, a trend that was echoed in all four Boulder Valley and Northern Colorado counties. 

Statewide, the seasonally adjusted jobless figure last month was 3.6%, up two-tenths of a point from September, according to data released Friday by the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.

The national rate rose by the same number of percentage points month-over-month to 3.7% in October.

Locally, Boulder County set the tone with a 2.8% not-seasonally adjusted jobless rate, up from 2.5% in September. Larimer County had a rate of 2.9%, up from 2.7%. Broomfield County posted an October rate of 3%, up from 2.7%. Weld County had a rate of 3.7% last month, up from 3.4% in September.

September’s county-level results are pretty much par for the course, Ryan Gedney, senior labor economist with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, said Friday.

“As we’ve been reporting these numbers through the pandemic, it’s the Boulder and Fort Collins metros that have the lowest unemployment,” he said. “I would attribute [that] primarily to a mix of demographics and industry. Those are going to be your two main drivers there in terms of what the difference is between Boulder and Fort Collins compared to other metro areas around the state.”

Colorado’s labor-force participation rate has held steady at 69.4% for two consecutive months. That rate is good for second in the nation.

Over the year, the average workweek for all Colorado employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased from 33.4 to 33.8 hours, while average hourly earnings grew from $32.69 to $35.27, which is $2.69 more than the national average hourly earnings of $32.58, according to CDLE.

Source: BizWest