03/24/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Colorado Unemployment Jumps To 7.5 Percent In December

Colorado's unemployment rate jumped from 6.9 percent to 7.5 percent for the month of December according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.

The Denver Business Journal reports that prior to December the unemployment rate was decreasing since July when it peaked at 7.8 percent.

"In addition to anticipated weakness in retail trade, employment in December was affected by a particularly severe cold snap," the department's executive director, Donald Mares, said in a statement.

Employment increased in six of Colorado's eleven major industries, including leisure and hospitality, trade, transportation and utilities Education and health services and mining and logging also added jobs. Employment was down in construction, government, and professional and business services.

A release from the Governor's Office released Friday said:

As economists have been telling us for quite some time, the road to recovery will be long and difficult. While financial experts believe we have come through the worst of the recession, families and small businesses will continue to struggle.

The release also noted that Colorado's unemployment rate is 2.5 points below the national average.