CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate increased +0.1 percentage points to 4.7 percent in June and nonfarm payrolls increased by +8,600 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. May job growth was revised up sharply to show an increase of +11,300 jobs rather than the preliminary estimate of +2,400 jobs.

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June’s monthly payroll gain kept over-the-year job growth well below the national average. In the first half of 2017, payroll growth is improved over 2016, but growing at half the pace of 2015 for the same six-month period.

“The unemployment rate increase and a decline in construction payroll are troublesome, but the trend of declining labor force is something we cannot ignore,” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “This was the fourth consecutive over-the-month decline in labor force, which is now at its lowest level since March 2006.”

“A competitive economy is crucial to creating jobs and opportunities for Illinoisans in every corner of the state,” said Illinois Department of Commerce Director Sean McCarthy. “We must institute true reforms that will help businesses expand and thrive here.”

In June, the three industry sectors with the largest gains in employment were: Professional and Business Services (+5,600); Leisure and Hospitality (+4,600); and Government (+1,400). The largest payroll declines were in the following sectors: Education and Health Services (-2,600); Construction (-1,000); and Financial Activities (-500).

Over-the-year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +54,100 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in June: Professional and Business Services (+21,300); Education and Health Services (+15,700); Financial Activities (+10,700). Industry sectors with the largest over-the-year declines include: Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-3,300); Construction (-1,700); and Government (-1,600). The +0.9 percent over-the-year gain in Illinois is about one-half as strong as the +1.6 percent gain posted by the nation in June.

The state’s unemployment rate is +0.3 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for June 2017, which increased to 4.4 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down -1.2 percentage points from a year ago when it was 5.9 percent. At 4.7 percent, the Illinois jobless rate stands -1.0 percentage points lower than January 2017.

The number of unemployed workers increased +1.4 percent from the prior month to 302,400, down -20.8 percent over the same month for the prior year. This was the first over-the-month gain in the number of unemployed persons since January 2017. The labor force decreased -0.3 percent over-the-month and declined by -1.0 percent in June over the prior year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment. An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work.

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To help connect jobseekers to employers who are hiring, IDES’ maintains the state’s largest job search engine (IJL). IJL recently showed 65,652 posted resumes with 176,536 jobs available.

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Jobs – by Major Industry

  • Monthly 2012 - 2016 labor force data for Illinois, and all other states, have been revised as required by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The monthly historical revisions to state labor force estimates reflect new national benchmark controls, state working-age population controls, seasonal factors, as well as updated total nonfarm jobs and unemployment benefits claims inputs. Illinois labor force data were also smoothed to eliminate large monthly changes as a result of volatility in the monthly Census Population Survey (CPS) and national benchmarking. For these reasons, comments and tables citing unemployment rates in previous state news releases/materials might no longer be valid.

  • Monthly seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Illinois and the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division are available here: Illinois & Chicago Metropolitan Area Unemployment Rates

  • Monthly 1990 – 2016 unadjusted and seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll data for Illinois have been revised. To control for potential survey error, the estimates are benchmarked annually to universal counts derived primarily from unemployment insurance tax reports.

  • Not seasonally adjusted jobs data with industry detail are available at Not Seasonally Adjusted Jobs. “Other Services” include activities in three broad categories: Personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations. Seasonally adjusted employment data for subsectors within industries are not available.

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