Illinois Unemployment Rate Inches Up — Because of 10,000 New Jobs Last Month

Illinois Unemployment Rate Inches Up — Because of 10,000 New Jobs Last Month

The Illinois Department of Employment Security announced Friday (Nov. 16, 2018) that the unemployment rate increased 0.1 percentage points to 4.2 percent in October. That’s the “bad” news.

The good news is the unemployment rate ticked up slightly because there were so many new jobs.

According to IDES, nonfarm payrolls increased by +10,300 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The September job gains were revised downward from the preliminary report (from 2,800 jobs to 1,700 jobs) but were still up overall.

“Nonfarm payrolls were up over-the-month led by gains in trade, transportation and utilities, information and manufacturing, “said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “The unemployment rate was about unchanged in October, inching up only slightly but lower than it was a year ago.”

DCEO Acting Director Leslie Munger says she’s excited to see Illinois’ unemployment rate continue to decline over the year.

“We are experiencing the benefits of working to create a more business-friendly environment and expanding new training and apprenticeship opportunities for those entering the workforce,” she said.

In October, the three industry sectors with the largest over-the-month gains in employment were: Trade, Transportation and Utilities (+5,300); Information Services (+2,000); and Manufacturing (+1,300).

The industry sectors with the largest payroll declines were: Professional and Business Services (-2,000), and Financial Activities (-600).

Over-the-year stats are also positive.

Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 59,300 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in October: Government (+14,800); Manufacturing (+12,800); and Construction (+9,800).

The industry sectors with over-the-year declines were: Other Services (-1,800) and Information Services (-1,200). Illinois nonfarm payrolls were up +1.0 percent over-the-year in sharp contrast to the nation’s +1.7 percent over-the-year gain in October.

The state’s unemployment rate is 0.5 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for October 2018, which held at 3.7 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down 0.7 percentage points from a year ago when it was 4.9 percent.

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,, which recently showed 57,508 posted resumes with 199,099 jobs available.

SOURCE: IDES news release