DENVER
10/21/2011 01:20 pm ET | Updated Dec 21, 2011

Colorado Unemployment Rate Drops Further To 8.0 Percent; Lowest Level In More Than Two And A Half Years (UPDATE)

Colorado's unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent in September, a two-and-a-half year low, according to data released Friday by the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.

UPDATE:

According to newly released US Bureau of Labor Statistics data, Colorado's unemployment rate further decreased to 8.0 percent in November 2011. That marks a 0.9 percent drop in unemployment from November 2010 to November 2011.

EARLIER:

From September 2010 to the same month in 2011, Colorado added 23,100 jobs. According to the report, the largest private sector job gains over the year were in leisure and hospitality, education and health services, and trade, transportation, and utilities.

The Denver Business Journal reports Colorado's unemployment rate in February 2011 was 9.3 percent -- the state's highest in 35 years of record keeping.

While the drop in unemployment is encouraging, plenty of folks are still out of work. "There's still a high rate of unemployment," Alexandra Hall, the Dept. of Labor and Employment's chief economist told Fox31. "Our economy just isn't creating jobs as quickly or as steadily as we need it to for us to get going again."

The national unemployment rate for September was 9.1 percent, compared to 9.6 percent a year ago.