Colo. jobless rate down slightly to 7.4 percent |

Colo. jobless rate down slightly to 7.4 percent


DENVER ” State labor officials say the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Colorado slipped a tenth of a percentage point to 7.4 percent in April, the first drop since October 2007.

But Colorado Department of Labor and Employment Executive Director Donald Mares said Friday he expects continued job losses to push the rate up in coming months.

One year ago, Colorado’s jobless rate was 4.7 percent.

The national unemployment rate was 8.9 percent in April.

Labor officials say an estimated 2.5 million Coloradans were employed in April, down 62,900 from a year earlier. About 201,300 were looking for work, up 74,000 from April 2008.

First-time filings for unemployment insurance through April have doubled compared with the first four months of last year, the labor department said.

Not including seasonal shifts in the labor force, nonfarm employment in April was down 3.8 percent compared with a year ago to about 2.26 million jobs. The leisure and hospitality sector lost about 4,600 jobs as ski season was winding down.

The 900 jobs added in construction in April represented the first increase in the sector since June, but it was only about one-fourth of the number of jobs the sector usually adds in April, labor officials said.

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