Unemployment rates up, jobs down in all metro areas

Metro regions of Illinois per the U.S. Bureau of Labor. (USBLS map)

The number of nonfarm jobs decreased over-the-year in all 14 Illinois metropolitan areas in September, with four metro areas at record low payrolls for that month, according to preliminary data released Oct. 22 by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

The unemployment rate increased over-the-year in all metro areas and posted a record high for the month of September in one metro area.

The official, BLS approved sub-state unemployment rate and nonfarm jobs series begins in 1990. Data reported prior to 1990 are not directly comparable due to updates in methodology.

“As Illinois continues to make necessary adjustments and work through the COVID-19 mitigation plan, the Pritzker administration remains committed to providing unemployment benefits as a means of economic relief to claimants who are still in need of the Department’s services,” said Deputy Gov. Dan Hynes.  “We take our role in this pandemic seriously, and will continue to work with IDES to support working families and provide employment training and services to those who seek it.”

The number of nonfarm jobs decreased in all fourteen Illinois metropolitan areas.  Total nonfarm jobs were down in Peoria (-10.5 percent, -17,900), Elgin (-8.8 percent, -23,200) and Lake-Kenosha (-7.6 percent, -32,000). In Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, jobs were down 7.2 percent (-274,200). No industry sector saw job gains in a majority of metro areas.

Not seasonally adjusted data compares September 2020 with September 2019. The not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 9.8 percent in September 2020 and the highest September unemployment rate since 2011, when it was also 9.8 percent.

Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in September 2020 and the highest September unemployment rate since 2011, when it was 8.8 percent.