Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment RatesUnemployment Rates Remain Higher than National Average in All 14 Illinois Metro Areas

CHICAGO–All of Illinois’ metropolitan (metro) areas experienced declines in their over-the-year unemployment rate. Eight of the metro areas had increases in nonfarm jobs and six reported declines, according to preliminary data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

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“Overall job growth continues to lag behind the national average,” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “We’re adding jobs at a slower pace now than we were at the beginning of 2016.”

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Illinois businesses added jobs in eight metro areas, in which the largest increases were seen in: Rockford (+1.8 percent, +2,700), Kankakee (+1.5 percent, +700), and Lake (+1.2 percent, +4,800). Total nonfarm jobs in the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division increased (+0.6 percent or +22,700). Illinois businesses lost jobs in six metro areas including Carbondale-Marion (-4.2 percent, -2,500), Peoria (-1.7 percent, -3,000), and Bloomington (-1.2 percent, -1,100). The industry sectors recording job growth in the majority of metro areas were: Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities (nine of 14), Education and Health Services (eight of 14), and Government (eight of 14).

Not seasonally adjusted data compares December 2016 with December 2015. The not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 5.6 percent in December 2016 and stood at 12.2 percent at its peak in this economic cycle in January 2010. Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.5 percent in December 2016 and 10.6 percent in January 2010 at its peak. The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and looking for work, and is not tied to collecting unemployment insurance benefits.

Total Nonfarm Jobs (Not Seasonally Adjusted) – December 2016

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