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Denver Area Reaches All-Time Low Unemployment Rate

In the news this week, reports of the unadjusted unemployment for metro-area Denver dropped to 2.4 percent in March. In comparison, 2016’s unadjusted unemployment rate was 3.6 percent. This drop in unemployment can be attributed to several major developments in the Denver area, as well as an influx of corporate headquarters relocating to Denver, especially in the fields of cybersecurity and energy. This is a positive for Denver businesses and the workforce alike.

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Unemployment rates for the metro-Denver area were calculated across several counties. In Douglas County the unemployment was closer to 2 percent; it was 2.3 percent in Broomfield County, 2.3 percent in Jefferson County, 2.4 percent in Arapahoe County, and 2.7 percent in Adams County. The adjusted average is calculated by factoring in seasonal unemployment and average turnover rates, which means the unadjusted unemployment rate is potentially higher than the average unemployment rate. The Denver jobless sector could be closer to 2% if adjustments were considered.

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Colorado’s oil and gas industry growth rose 2% last year. Similar trends have been noted in the sectors of renewable energy. Colorado is one of the country’s “green” states, because it has invested substantially in replacing conventional energy sources, such as oil and gas with renewable energy such as solar, wind, and hydroelectric power. Denver is a major tech innovation center, especially in the areas of cybersecurity. Colorado is home to the National Cybersecurity Center which cultivates job growth and entrepreneurial development in the fields of cybersecurity and analytics. All of these industries contribute to Denver’s employment increase over the past few years.

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The public sector saw significant job growth last month, as did the financial services (up 3,000); leisure and hospitality (1,600); and professional and business services (1,400). However there was an unexpected drop in construction and manufacturing jobs, which lost a total 2,500 jobs. This has caused issues in the housing market as new homes are reaching much higher prices than in years past. Construction employers are in need of skilled workers and are willing to spend much more on recruiting than before.

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