Mining experienced another strong quarter of employment growth adding 521 employees following a gain of 234 in second quarter. Employment is up 3.8% over last quarter with increases occurring in all sectors of the Mining industry. Oil & Gas Extraction (13) exhibited the largest sector gain adding 249 employees after many quarters of sluggish activity. Increases were tied to drilling projects on the west slope and eastern plains undertaken by a couple of companies. The Mining & Quarry Nonmetal (14) sector added 166 employees. Almost 90 employees were added due to an increased demand for sand and gravel. Short term projects in quarrying dimension stone and crushed and broken stone added another 70 employees. Coal Mining (12) employment expanded by 60. Gains appear to be temporary due to short term job fluctuations. Metal Mining (10) added 46 due to corporate growth and seasonal hiring.
Over the year Mining employment has grown 4.4% adding 607 employees. This is the largest annual gain recorded for the industry since Colorado Employment & Wages was first published in 1989. One third of the industry gain occurred in Mining & Quarry Nonmetal (14) up 206 employees. The increase of 206 was primarily fueled by increased demand for sand and gravel brought about by road projects and a booming new home market. Oil & Gas Extraction (13) following months of inactivity reported sizable gains this quarter driving annual employment up 142. Over the year mine expansions and some temporary construction activity led to the gain of 147 employees in Coal Mining (12). Metal Mining (10) added 111 employees. Despite a mine closure and corporate cutbacks in Gold & Silver (104) gains in Ferroalloy Ores (106) and Uranium-Vanadium Ores (109) have out paced the losses.
Colorado Employment and Wages (ES202) Third Quarter 1997