SPRINGFIELD – The City of Edwardsville cruised through the COVID-19 Pandemic in regard to the unemployment stats. In March 2021, Edwardsville had a 3.6 percent unemployment rate, the lowest of cities in the Metro East area.

New Mayor Art Risavy said Edwardsville has been able to thrive despite the setbacks of COVID-19 Pandemic. He pointed out the city had a 2-percent gain in tax revenue despite COVID-19.

Risavy pointed out that previous Mayor Hal Patton did an exceptional job managing the City of Edwardsville economy and with his works on parks and green space. He hopes to follow suit on many of Patton's priorities. Walter Williams was also saluted for his work on the economic front during COVID-19 for the City of Edwardsville through COVID-19.

Mayor Patton said in a previous interview that Edwardsville was blessed with businesses that were able to trudge through the COVID-19 Pandemic and continue to blossom.

The City of Alton's unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in March 2021 compared to 3.9 percent in March 2020. Alton Mayor Brant Walker said COVID-19 was hard on Alton's economy with the Argosy shut down for weeks and many of the bars and restaurants working on a limited and some not any basis.

Granite City has a 7.0 percent unemployment rate in March 2021 compared to 3.7 percent the year before, Belleville a 7.2 percent rate to 3.8 percent the year before and Collinsville is better than the others with a 5.8 percent rate compared to 3.4 percent last year. East St. Louis' unemployment stood at 12.0 percent in March 2021.

Madison County's overall unemployment rate is 5.4 percent in March 2021, compared to 3.3 percent last year, Jersey is 4.7 percent compared to 3.7 last year, Macoupin and Greene County both stood at 5.0 percent and Calhoun at 5.2 percent.

The number of non-farm jobs decreased over the year in all 14 Illinois metropolitan areas in March, according to preliminary data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES). The unemployment rate increased over the year in all metro areas. The official, BLS approved sub-state unemployment rate and non-farm jobs series begins in 1990. Data reported prior to 1990 are not directly comparable due to updates in methodology.

“As the state moves through pandemic recovery and the economy begins to heal itself, the major focus remains on assisting claimants and providing support to those still impacted,” said Deputy Governor Dan Hynes. “IDES remains committed to administering benefits and providing job-matching services to individuals dislocated from their jobs as a result of the pandemic and eager to jump back into the workforce.”

Metro East Highlights

The March 2021 unemployment rate for the Illinois Section of the St. Louis Metropolitan Statistical Area was 5.6 percent. The over-the-year rate increased +2.2 percentage points from the March 2020 rate of 3.4 percent. The data is not seasonally adjusted.

The labor force decreased by -10,472 to 325,502 in March 2021 from 335,974 in March 2020. The number of employed individuals decreased by -17,108 to 307,331 in March 2021 from 324,439 in March 2020. In March 2021, there were 18,171 unemployed people in the labor force. This is an increase of +6,636 compared to the 11,535 unemployed in March 2020.

The number of total nonfarm jobs was 227,000 compared to March 2020, which is a decrease of -11,000.

Employment declined in Leisure and Hospitality (-4,600), Educational and Health Services (-3,200), Other Services (-1,000), Mining and Construction (-500), Retail Trade (-500), Manufacturing (-400), Financial Activities (-400), Information (-300), and Wholesale Trade (-300).

Payrolls increased in Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities (+2,300), and Professional and Business Services (+100).

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