Illinois Payrolls Up in Nearly All Industries from Prior Year

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate rose to 4.3 percent in December and nonfarm payrolls increased by +13,600 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. The November jobs gain was revised upward from the preliminary report (from +5,900 jobs to +8,000 jobs). Job growth was stronger during the October to December period posting an average monthly change of +9,500 jobs, an improvement over the prior month when the three-month average change was +5,500 jobs. In December, the three industry sectors with the largest over-the-month gains in employment were: Government (+6,300), Leisure and Hospitality (+4,600) and Trade, Transportation and Utilities (+2,800). The industry sectors with payroll declines were: Information (-1,000) Financial Activities (-700) and Construction (-600. Over-the-year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +71,000 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in December: Government (+24,700); Education and Health Services (+11,200) and Leisure and Hospitality (+10,200). The industry sectors with over-the-year declines were: Information (-3,900) and Other Services (-300). Illinois nonfarm payrolls were up +1.2 percent over-the-year as compared to the nation’s +1.8 percent over-the-year gain in December. The state’s unemployment rate is +0.4 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for December 2018, which rose to 3.9 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down -0.6 percentage points from a year ago when it was 4.9 percent. The number of unemployed workers increased +1.3 percent from the prior month to 277,500 but down -12.2 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force was about unchanged over-the-month and over-the-year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment.

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