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Statewide unemployment drops for third consecutive month to 10.2%

The September payroll jobs estimate and unemployment rate reflects activity for the week including the week of Sept. 12.
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Published: Oct. 16, 2020 at 2:10 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - The Illinois Department of Employment Security announced the unemployment rate fell 0.8 percentage point to 10.2 percent, while nonfarm payrolls lost 12,000 jobs in September, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and released by IDES.

The August monthly change in payrolls was revised upward from the preliminary report, from up 66,000 to up 85,600 jobs. The August unemployment rate was unchanged from the preliminary report and held at 11.0 percent.

The September payroll jobs estimate and unemployment rate reflects activity for the week including the week of Sept. 12. The BLS has published FAQs for the September payroll jobs and the unemployment rate.

The state’s unemployment rate was up 2.3 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for September, which was 7.9 percent, down 0.5 percentage points from the previous month. The Illinois unemployment rate was up 6.5 percentage points from a year ago when it was 3.7 percent.

In September, the three industry sectors with the largest over-the-month gains in employment were: Leisure and Hospitality up 9,300 jobs, Trade, Transportation and Utilities were up 7,700 jobs, and Other Services went up 3,800 jobs. The industry sectors that reported the largest payroll declines were: Professional and Business Services are down 12,400 jobs, Government jobs went down 8,500 and Educational and Health Services positions declined 7,300.

Compared to a year ago, nonfarm payroll employment decreased by 412,900 jobs, with losses across all major industries. The industry groups with the largest jobs decreases were: Leisure and Hospitality, which went down 130,800 jobs, Professional and Business Services positions declined by 82,900 and Educational and Health Services dropped 46,600 jobs. Illinois nonfarm payrolls were down 6.8 percent over-the-year as compared to the nation’s 6.4 percent over-the-year decline in September.

The number of unemployed workers declined from the prior month, a 6.2 percent decrease to 652,100 but was up 171.4 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force was up 1.2 percent over-the-month and down 0.7 percent over-the-year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and seeking employment. An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work.

In May, Governor Pritzker launched Get Hired Illinois, a new one-stop-shop website to help connect job seekers with hiring employers in real time. The site features virtual job fairs, no-cost virtual training, and includes Illinois Job Link, the state’s largest job search engine, which recently showed 90,264 posted resumes with 61,927 available jobs.

More information on the unemployment numbers can be found here.

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