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Report shows job growth in most areas of state

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Unemployment declined to 12 of the state’s 14 metro areas in September, according to the latest report from the Illinois Department of Employment Security.   

The monthly metro jobs report showed the number of non-farm jobs increased in 13 of the 14 metro areas, Illinois Department of Employment Security spokeswoman Rebecca Cisco said. Castro said the state has seen broad-based growth in most areas. Peoria was the only metro area in the state where the number of jobs decreased from September 2018 to September 2019. Peoria had a year-to-year loss of about 1,500 jobs.

Cisco said the report showed record-low unemployment in three metro areas and 34 counties.

Two metro areas didn’t see declines. The Quad City metro unemployment rate was unchanged year to year at 3.9 percent. Unemployment in the Rockford metro area increased from 4.9 percent in September 2018 to 5.3 percent last month.

The biggest decline in the year-to-year unemployment rate was in Carbondale, where unemployment fell from 4.5 percent in September 2018 to 3.7 percent in September 2019. Champaign and Danville both saw drops in unemployment of 0.6 percentage points last month. The Danville unemployment rate fell from 5.6 percent in September 2018 to 5 percent last month.  Champaign fell from 4.1 percent to 3.5 percent, year to year.

The Chicago metro area had the lowest September unemployment rate in the state with 3.2 percent. Rockford had the highest unemployment rate in the state at 5.3 percent.

The Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights metro area continued to lead the state in the number of new non-farm jobs. In September, that metro added 27,600 new jobs, compared to the same month last year. The Champaign metro area added about 2,700 jobs, Carbondale added 1,600 jobs, and the St. Louis metro area added about 3,800 jobs.

Deputy Illinois Governor Dan Hynes credited Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s administration for helping to boost the state’s economy.

Hynes said the Rebuild Illinois Capital bill was “essential to making critical investments throughout the state that will create an economy that works for everyone.”

The industry with strongest job growth in most metro areas was the mining and construction jobs sector, which increased in 11 of the 14 metro areas.

The not seasonally adjusted Illinois unemployment rate fell to 3.6 percent last month, down from 3.9 percent in September 2018. Nationally, the September unemployment was 3.3 percent.

The unemployment rate measures those who are out of work and looking for work.