Colorado Employment Situation-March 2014

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Nonfarm payroll jobs increased 3,300 over the month from February to March to 2,423,300 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs increased 2,700 and government increased 600.

According to the survey of households, the unemployment rate increased one tenth of a percentage point in March to 6.2 percent.

The number of people participating in the labor force increased 19,700 over the month and the number of people reporting themselves as employed increased 17,300. The larger increase in the labor force than in total employment caused the number of unemployed to increase 2,400 and increased the unemployment rate to 6.2 percent. The national unemployment rate was unchanged at 6.7 percent.

Over the year, the average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased from 34.7 to 34.8 hours and average hourly earnings increased from $25.26 to $26.37.

The largest over the month private sector job gains were in trade, transportation and utilities, construction and other services. The largest over the month decline was in professional and business services.

Over the year, nonfarm payroll jobs increased 61,000. Private sector payroll jobs increased 55,800 and government increased 5,200. The largest private sector job gains were in professional and business services, leisure and hospitality, and education and health services. There were no significant over the year declines.

Over the year, the unemployment rate declined eight tenths of one percentage point from 7.0 percent in March 2013. The number of Coloradans participating in the labor force increased 34,600, total employment increased 55,600 and the number of unemployed decreased 20,900. The national unemployment rate declined from 7.5 percent in March 2013 to 6.7 percent in March 2014.

The following is a breakdown of unemployment percentages for counties in southeast Colorado for March 2014. 

                                Mar 2014              Unemp                 Feb 2014              Mar 2013              Unemp 

Baca                         3.0                          71                           3.7                          3.7                          81
Bent                         6.7                        153                          7.1                           7.9                        166
Kiowa                      3.7                           35                          3.6                           4.1                          35
Kit Carson               4.3                         191                         4.6                           4.3                        185
Las Animas             9.2                         705                         9.0                         10.7                        827
Crowley                  9.4                         150                       10.3                           8.7                        130
Otero                      8.8                         800                          8.4                          9.7                         836
Prowers                 5.4                          354                         5.6                           5.8                        366


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