The jobless rate in Illinois is unchanged from November to December: 8.7 percent. It’s down from the December 2011 rate of 9.7 percent. Illinois Department of Employment Security spokesman Greg Rivara says this is not necessarily a surprise: “Not at all. December is another month that reminds us that this recovery is a long-term process that will be marked by up, down, and sometimes sideway movements, especially in the monthly reports. The overall data continues to show positive momentum, moderate growth for the past couple of years,” he said.
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The department recently announced that it will be closing its offices in Centralia, DeKalb, East St. Louis, Galesburg, Jacksonville, Mattoon and Murphysboro. Rivara says it’s because of a decrease in the number of claims and an increase in the amount of business conducted online.