Illinois Unemployment Rate Dips in January
CHICAGO, IL – The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate decreased by -0.1 percentage point to 4.8 percent in January and nonfarm payrolls increased by +200 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. December jobs were revised down to show a slight drop (-700 jobs) rather than a slight gain as initially reported (+1,500 jobs).
Today’s report incorporates annual benchmark revisions for nonfarm payrolls as well as labor force statistics. Nonfarm payrolls were revised slightly higher for 2016 and 2017. The revised December 2015-2016 growth is now +0.6% and the revised December 2016-2017 growth is now +0.7% (pre-benchmark these were +0.3% and +0.5%, respectively). Revisions to labor force statistics resulted in a slightly higher labor force participation rate, employment participation rate and unemployment rate for calendar year 2017.
The revised nonfarm payroll figures revealed that Illinois surpassed its prior business cycle peak from September 2000 level in June 2017. In January 2018, Illinois nonfarm payrolls are at a new high; 0.4% above the prior peak.
“Illinois job growth over the past year has been spurred by a resurgence in manufacturing.” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “Over the year, manufacturing payrolls accounted for close to half of the total increase of jobs in Illinois.”
“This new peak employment milestone is a testament to the work that has been done by the Rauner Administration to encourage competition, create jobs and reduce burdensome bureaucracy,” said Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Director Sean McCarthy. “Just last week, our state was named in the top three for site selection and our strengths within identified industries, like manufacturing, are elevating our efforts to attract investment to Illinois. It has never been more clear to employers across the world that Illinois is open for business.”
In January, the three industry sectors with the largest gains in employment were: Leisure and Hospitality (+4,000); Education and Health Services (+1,700); and Financial Activities (+1,300). The three industry sectors with the largest payroll declines were: Trade, Transportation & Utilities (-2,100); Professional & Business Services (-1,800); and Construction (-1,100).
Over-the-year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +47,100 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in January: Manufacturing (+20,200); Leisure and Hospitality (+13,900); and Education and Health Services (+6,200). The industry sectors with the largest over-the-year declines include: Information Services (-3,400); Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-3,300); and Other Services (-400). Illinois nonfarm payrolls were up +0.8 percent over-the-year in sharp contrast to the nation’s +1.5 percent over-the-year gain in January.
The state’s unemployment rate is +0.7 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for January 2018, which held at 4.1 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down -0.4 percentage points from a year ago when it was 5.2 percent. The Illinois jobless rate last stood at 4.8 percent in May 2007.
The number of unemployed workers dipped -2.1 percent from the prior month to 311,500, down -8.5 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force decreased -0.1 percent over-the-month and also over the prior year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment.
An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work. To help connect jobseekers to employers who are hiring, IDES’ maintains the state’s largest job search engine, IllinoisJoblink.com (IJL), which recently showed 63,832 posted resumes with 185,983 jobs available.
Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates
Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Jobs – by Major Industry
• 1976-2017 seasonally adjusted labor force data for Illinois, and all other states, have been revised as required by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The monthly historical revisions to state labor force estimates reflect new national benchmark controls, state working-age population controls, seasonal factors, as well as updated total nonfarm jobs and unemployment benefits claims inputs. Illinois labor force data were also smoothed to eliminate large monthly changes as a result of volatility in the monthly Census Population Survey (CPS) and national benchmarking. In February 2018, the BLS also introduced a new seasonal adjustment procedure for state labor force estimates which resulted in the entire monthly historical series for Illinois and all other states being replaced. For all of these reasons, the comments and tables citing unemployment rates in previous state news releases/materials may no longer be valid.
• Monthly seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Illinois and the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division are available here: Illinois & Chicago Metropolitan Area Unemployment Rates
• Monthly 2013-2017 seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll employment data for Illinois have been revised. To control for potential survey error, the estimates are benchmarked annually to universal counts derived primarily from unemployment insurance tax reports. Effective with January 2018 estimates, the BLS introduced concurrent seasonal adjustment for monthly state nonfarm payroll employment estimates
• Not seasonally adjusted jobs data with industry detail are available at Not Seasonally Adjusted Jobs. “Other Services” include activities in three broad categories: Personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations. Seasonally adjusted employment data for subsectors within industries are not available
About IDES: IDES encourages employment by connecting employers to jobseekers, provides unemployment insurance benefits to eligible individuals, produces labor market data and protects taxpayers from unemployment insurance fraud. Visit the Department’s website at www.ides.illinois.gov for more information. You can also follow IDES on Twitter and Facebook.