University of Colorado economists expect the state unemployment rate to rise to 6.5 percent next year as the state joins the rest of the U.S. in a recession.
The rate was 5.7 percent in October.
A forecast released today by CU-Boulder's Leeds School of Business predicts Colorado will lose jobs in 2009 for just the seventh time since annual records have been kept since 1939.
Economist Richard Wobbekind of CU said he expects 4,000 job losses next year.
As of November, the office of state planning and budgeting was predicting a 5 percent unemployment rate for 2009.
The office is expected to issue its latest quarterly revenue and economic forecast later this month.