Weld County loses the top spot it held for past two years
By Aldo Svaldi
The Denver Post
POSTED: 09/18/2015 04:47:10 PM
Adams County rose to second place in the national race for job growth in first quarter as longtime leader Weld County dropped from first to ninth, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The bureau tracks job growth each quarter for the country’s 342 largest counties. In 2013 and 2014, Weld County was the economy to beat.
Heading into 2015, the petroleum-dependent county appears to be spilling oil jobs all over the track, raising questions of whether it has blown its engine and can stay in the race.
Adams County non-farm employment increased 5.8 percent in March from the same month a year earlier. That outpaced the 2.1 percent gain nationally and was behind only Utah County, Utah, at 6.7 percent.
Adams County ranked third for job growth nationally in the fourth quarter and 11th in the third quarter. Even as it moved into second place, its job growth dropped to 5.8 percent from 6.4 percent.
Both counties have benefitted from robust drilling in the Denver-Julesburg Basin, but more of the activity is centered in Weld County. A halving of oil prices has reduced the number of active rigs and raised worries about layoffs.
Aldo Svaldi: 303-954-1410, email@example.com or twitter.com/aldosvaldi