Total nonfarm payroll jobs reach record low unemployment rate in July

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Chicago Construction News staff writer

The state unemployment rate was unchanged at 4 percent in July, the lowest level since the onset of the pandemic, the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) says in a recent statement.

Nonfarm payrolls increased by +11,200 last month, surpassing the pre-pandemic number of total payrolls, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES.

Industry sectors with the largest over-the-month job gains included educational and health services (+6,400), trade, transportation and utilities (+4,500), and government (+1,900). The industry sectors with monthly payroll job declines included: professional and business services (-3,000), other services (-900) and manufacturing (-500).

“Illinois has experienced consecutive job growth every month this year, and today’s record-breaking total payroll jobs data is clear indication of the marked level of strength in the labor market throughout the state,” said Deputy Governor Andy Manar. “As the state continues to prioritize investments in workforce opportunities, IDES and its partners stand ready to provide the services needed for individuals to take advantage of the new and expanding job possibilities across Illinois.”

Illinois’ unemployment rate was +0.5 percentage point higher than the national unemployment rate reported for July. The national unemployment rate was 3.5 percent in July, down -0.1 percentage point from the previous month. The Illinois unemployment rate was down -0.4 percentage point from a year ago when it was at 4.4 percent.

Compared to a year ago, nonfarm payroll jobs increased by +89,700 jobs, with gains across most major industries. The industry groups with the largest jobs increases included educational and health Services (+42,500), Government (+27,200), and Leisure and Hospitality (+26,500). Professional and Business Services (-12,400), Manufacturing (-10,200), and Information (-5,200) reported declines in payroll jobs. In July, total nonfarm payrolls were up +1.5 percent over-the-year in Illinois and up +2.2 percent in the nation.

“It’s clear that Illinois is making significant progress as we achieve this notable milestone for payroll jobs,” said DCEO director Kristin Richards. “Illinois is experiencing a banner year for economic development and DCEO remains committed to providing resources and support to job seekers and job creators across the state.”


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