New Insights to Northern Colorado’s Economic Recovery

The Fort Collins Area Chamber and other economic development partners from across the two-county area continue to support the maintenance of and our Economic Recovery Tracker.  The Tracker includes a set of indicators that represent critical aspects of the Larimer and Weld County economies, are based on data that is accessible in a useable format, and updated frequently with little lag time.

The indicators are updated at least monthly with no more than a two-month lag and are primarily available at the county level. They provide almost real-time insights about economic conditions and recovery status.

The Tracker was updated this week with August data. Below are new insights shared by Caroline Alexander, our economic analyst:

  • The seasonal uptick in the unemployment rate in June was followed by a decline in the unemployment rate in July. The contraction of the labor force is also part of this seasonality and part of the reason that the unemployment rate fell. Bottom line, though, is that there are fewer unemployed people.
  • Job posting activity slowed just a little bit. There is still about 1 posting for every 1 unemployed person.
  • The region is still working towards regaining the jobs lost at the beginning of the Pandemic but it is still short about 14,000 jobs (from the 2019 average)
  • The hardest hit sectors – leisure and hospitality and retail trade – have largely recovered. Now, the sectors that have lost the largest number of jobs are State Government (Education), mining/logging/construction, and information. The sectors that have gained the most jobs are federal government, professional & business services, and wholesale trade.
  • Retail sales continue to be strong.
  • A slight decline in mobility to recreation and retail destinations could be an indicator of things slowing down due to the Delta surge. We will have to watch this carefully and see how things play out.
  • Tourism continues to be strong even though RMNP visitation is capped.
  • Median home values continue to climb and the building use tax receipts indicate that construction is strong (though some of the increase in value could be due to the increases in material prices).
  • All in all things are looking good, but the region is still a ways away from recovering all the jobs that were lost.


Written by Ann Hutchison, President & CEO

September 7, 2021
For comments and questions about this blog, please email Ann at [email protected].