The unemployment rate decreased in all 14 Illinois metropolitan areas in July, according to preliminary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES). Jobs were up in all metro areas except one.

“Today’s data is an indication that economic recovery is taking place throughout the state,” said Deputy Governor Andy Manar. “As unemployment rates continue to decline and jobs increase, IDES is committed to providing training and employment services with its local partners to connect workers and employers together in the Illinois workforce.”

The metro areas that had the largest over-the-year percentage increases in total nonfarm jobs were the Rockford MSA (+5.5%, +7,600), the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island IA-IL MSA (+4.8%, +8,600), and the Chicago Metropolitan Division (+4.8%, +173,600). Total nonfarm jobs were down in the Illinois section of the St. Louis MSA (-0.2%, -500). Industries that saw job growth in a majority of metro areas include:

  • Manufacturing and Leisure & Hospitality (14 areas);
  • Mining & Construction and Professional & Business Services (11 areas each);
  • Transportation, Warehousing & Utilities (10 areas);
  • Retail Trade, Education & Health Services, and Other Services (nine areas each);
  • Wholesale Trade and Government (eight areas each).

The metro areas with the largest unemployment rate decreases were the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division (-2.4 points to 4.9%), the Rockford MSA (-2.3 points to 6.5%), and the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island IA-IL MSA (-1.5 points to 3.8%). The over-the-year unemployment rate decreased in 99 counties, increased in two counties, and remained unchanged in one county.

In the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island area, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 3.8% in July 2022 from 5.3% in July 2021. The last time the July rate was equal to or lower was in 2019 when it was 3.7%. Total nonfarm employment increased by 8,600 jobs, compared to July 2021. Leisure-Hospitality (+3,200), Professional-Business Services (+2,200), Manufacturing (+1,500), Government (+1,200), and Retail Trade (+1,100) had the largest job gains over the past year. The Educational-Health Services (-800) and Financial Activities (-300) sectors recorded employment losses over the past year.

The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and seeking employment. A person who exhausts benefits, or is ineligible, will still be reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively look for work.