SPRINGFIELD – Total nonfarm jobs increased in thirteen metropolitan areas and decreased in one for the year ending February 2023, according to data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (DES). Over-the-year, the unemployment rate decreased in seven areas, increased in five areas and was unchanged in two.

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“Today’s data is further indication that job growth continues to trend in the right direction with expansion throughout every corner of the state across sectors,” said Deputy Governor Andy Manar. “Job expansion creates new and growing career opportunities for jobseekers and the demand for employers to invest in and retain the talented and diverse Illinois labor force.”

The metro areas which had the largest over-the-year percentage increases in total nonfarm jobs were the Bloomington MSA (+4.8%, +4,500), the Peoria MSA (3.9%, +6,400), and the Champaign-Urbana MSA (+3.4%, +4,000). Total nonfarm jobs in the Chicago Metropolitan Division were up +2.1% or +77,500. Total nonfarm jobs were down in the Illinois section of the St. Louis MSA (-0.4%, -1,000). Industries that saw job growth in a majority of metro areas included: Mining and Construction and Leisure and Hospitality (fourteen areas each); Education and Health Services, Other Services and Government (thirteen areas each); Manufacturing and Wholesale Trade (eleven areas each); Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities (ten areas).

The metro areas with the largest unemployment rate decreases were in the Chicago Metropolitan Division (-0.9 point to 4.1%), the Rockford MSA (-0.8 point to 6.3%), and the Decatur MSA (-0.6 point to 5.9%). The largest unemployment rate increases were in the Lake County-Kenosha County Metro (+0.4 point to 5.4%), the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island IA-IL MSA (+0.3%, +4.6%) and the Elgin Metro (+0.3 point to 5.9%). The unemployment rate was unchanged in the Bloomington MSA (4.0%) and the Champaign-Urbana MSA (4.1%).

Metro East Highlights

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The February 2023 unemployment rate for the Illinois Section of the St. Louis Metropolitan Statistical Area was 4.1 percent. The unemployment rate decreased -0.2 percentage point over-the-year from the February 2022 rate of 4.3 percent. The data are not seasonally adjusted.

The labor force decreased by -1,501 in February 2023 to 332,297 from 333,798 in February 2022. The number of employed individuals decreased by -671 to 318,728 in February 2023 from 319,399 in February 2022. There were 13,569 unemployed people in the labor force in February 2023. This is a decrease of -830 compared to the 14,399 unemployed in February 2022.

Total nonfarm payrolls declined by -1,000 jobs in February 2023 to 234,300 compared to 235,300 jobs in February 2022.

Payrolls increased in Manufacturing (+1,000), Leisure and Hospitality (+500), Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities (+500), Government (+300), Financial Activities (+300), Professional and Business Services (+200) and Retail Trade (+100).

Nonfarm payrolls declined in Information (-1,300), Mining and Construction (-1,300), Educational and Health Services (-1,100) and Wholesale Trade (-200).

Other Services payrolls were unchanged over-the-year.

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