The number of new business filings increased in Colorado during the first quarter of 2017 and are elevating expectations of future job growth, according to a recent report from the University of Colorado-Boulder.

According to the report, the Colorado secretary of state’s business and licensing division recorded 32,450 new business filings in the first quarter — representing a 9.3-percent increase from Q1 2016.

“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 at CU-Boulder. “We need to understand how much the low unemployment rate and the availability and affordability of housing may constrain growth in the short term.”

The report also showed that the state had recorded 112,295 new business filings for all of 2016, which was higher than 2015.

The report did, however, indicate that there are substantial differences between employment levels — as well as expectation for future growth — in rural parts of the state when compared to urban metropolitan areas such as Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins and Colorado Springs. The report stated that job growth in those rural areas is lagging.

“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 Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams.

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In preparing the report, the CU-Boulder Business Research Division at the Leeds School of Business used data from the secretary of state’s business registry, including new business filings, business renewals, new construction and the rate of unemployment throughout the state and nationally.

The report also found a 17.3-percent increase in renewal among existing entities, which accounted for 139,876 in the year’s first quarter. That increase followed two straight quarters of “flat growth,” according to the report. Entities in “good standing” also reached a new high in Q1 2017, increasing 6.1 percent over last year.