Growth in Colorado business filings bodes well for future employment levels

New business filings exhibited strong growth in the first quarter of 2017, raising future employment expectations, according to a University of Colorado Boulder report released today by Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams.

However, the report – prepared by CU Boulder’s Business Research Division at the Leeds School of Business using data from the secretary of state’s business registry – notes differences in employment levels between the urban and rural parts of the state, with job growth in communities outside of the metropolitan statistical areas lagging.

The report looks at a variety of factors, including new business filings, business renewals, construction and the unemployment rate, both in Colorado and nationally.

“The economic conditions in rural Colorado warrant continued monitoring, but the solid growth in most Colorado economic indicators – coupled with the high level of optimism from our business leaders – is very encouraging as we move ahead in 2017,” said Williams.

The secretary of state’s business and licensing division recorded 32,450 new business filings in the first quarter of 2017, a 9.3 percent increase over the same period in 2016. Over the 12-month period ending December 2016, there were 112,295 new business filings in the state, also showing growth compared with the year prior.

“While the indicators are positive, we continue to keep our eye on capacity issues in Colorado,” said economist Richard Wobbekind, executive director of the Business Research Division. “We need to understand how much the low unemployment rate and the availability and affordability of housing may constrain growth in the short term.”

Existing entity renewals totaled 139,876 in the first quarter of 2017, increasing 17.3 percent compared with the fourth quarter of 2016, after two consecutive quarters of flat growth, according to the report. Also, entities in good standing reached a new peak in the first quarter, increasing 6.1 percent year-over-year.

Download economic indicator report.