Colorado Employment Situation for January 2023


Unemployment Rate Has Returned to Pre-Pandemic Levels; 800 Nonfarm Payroll Jobs Added in January

The annual unemployment rate for Colorado was 3.0 percent in 2022, revised down from the previously published 3.6 percent. The U.S. unemployment rate in 2022 was 3.6 percent.

Colorado nonfarm payroll employment increased at an annual rate of 4.1 percent in 2022, or 112,800 jobs. The U.S. annual payroll jobs growth rate in 2022 was 4.3 percent.

Household survey data:

According to the survey of households, Colorado’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was unchanged in January compared to the revised December rate of 2.8 percent. The number of unemployed individuals rose by 1,300 over the same time period to 90,400. As revised, Colorado’s unemployment rate has remained below 3.0 percent for nine consecutive months and has returned to pre-pandemic levels. The national unemployment rate declined by one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.4 percent, a 54-year low.

Colorado’s labor force increased by 8,000 in January to 3,206,400. The share of Coloradans participating in the labor force rose slightly to 68.1 percent in January, compared to 68.0 percent the month prior. The U.S. labor force participation rate was 62.4 percent in January, also increasing one-tenth of a percentage point from the month prior.

The number of individuals employed in Colorado grew by 6,700 in January to 3,115,900, which represents 66.2 percent of the state’s 16+ population. The rate of 66.2 percent is three-tenths of a percentage point higher than a year ago. The national employment-to-population ratio was 60.2 percent in January.

Establishment survey data:

Employers in Colorado added 800 nonfarm payroll jobs from December to January for a total of 2,883,000 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs were unchanged in January and government added 800 jobs. After annual revisions and the January gain of 800, Colorado has added 438,800 nonfarm payroll jobs over the past 33 months, compared to losses totaling 376,900 in March and April 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 116.4 percent, which exceeds the U.S. rate of 112.3 percent.

Since May 2020, Colorado’s private sector has grown by 436,100 jobs, compared to declines of 362,100 in early 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 120.4 percent, compared to the national rate of 115.2 percent.

These are the unemployment percentages for several southeastern Colorado counties:


Labor Force

Jan 2023 Unemployed Dec 2022 Jan 2022



1,921 1.9 37 1.4 2.1 42
Bent 1,672 3.2 53 2.9 5.2



818 2.3 19 1.6 2.5 22
Las Animas 5,778 4.9 281 4.2 6.3



7,526 4.1 3.9 3.5 5.6 433
Prowers 5,892 2.6 154 2.1 4.1


Filed Under: AgricultureChamber of CommerceCountyEconomyEmploymentFeatured


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