Unemployment Rates Up, Jobs Down in All Metro Areas Across the State of Illinois

Contact: Rebecca Cisco | 217.524.1219
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1/28/2021 - The number of nonfarm jobs decreased over-the-year in all fourteen Illinois metropolitan areas in December, according to preliminary data released today 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. 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 works to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic with the ongoing vaccine rollout, IDES remains committed to supporting displaced workers and families by offering support and services to those who need it,” said Deputy Governor Dan Hynes. “The Pritzker administration and IDES continue to work with the U.S. Department of Labor to implement the new federal unemployment program changes as seamlessly as possible to ensure claimants have access to benefits for which they are eligible to receive.”

The number of nonfarm jobs decreased in all fourteen Illinois metropolitan areas. The metro areas which had the largest over-the-year percentage decreases in total nonfarm jobs were the Peoria MSA (-9.6%, -16,300), the Elgin Metropolitan Division (-9.2%, -24,100) and the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division (-7.4%, -284,800). Three metro areas recorded their lowest total nonfarm jobs for the month of December on record (dating back to 1990).

Over-the-year, the unemployment rate increased in all 14 metropolitan areas; the metro areas with the largest unemployment rate increases were the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division (+5.9 points to 8.7%), the Decatur MSA (+3.0 points to 8.2%) and the Springfield MSA (+2.5 points to 6.3%). The not seasonally adjusted Illinois unemployment rate was 7.5 percent in December 2020. Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 6.5 percent in December 2020.


Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Metropolitan AreaDecember 2020*December 2019**Over-the-Year Change
Bloomington5.2%3.3%1.9
Carbondale-Marion5.4%3.7%1.7
Champaign-Urbana 5.0%3.2%1.8
Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights8.7%2.8%5.9
Danville 6.4%5.2%1.2
Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL5.1%4.4%0.7
Decatur 8.2%5.2%3.0
Elgin6.5%4.4%2.1
Kankakee6.4%5.4%1.0
Lake-Kenosha, IL-WI6.2%4.1%2.1
Peoria6.8%4.7%2.1
Rockford7.3%5.8%1.5
Springfield6.3%3.8%2.5
St. Louis (IL-Section)5.4%3.7%1.7
Illinois Statewide7.5%3.5%4.0
* Preliminary  I  **Revised


Total Nonfarm Jobs (Not Seasonally Adjusted) –December 2020

Metropolitan AreaDecemberDecemberOver-the-Year
 2020*2019**Change
Bloomington MSA87,50093,100-5,600
Carbondale-Marion MSA56,00058,600-2,600
Champaign-Urbana MSA114,300119,200-4,900
Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division3,544,2003,829,000
-284,800
Danville MSA26,50027,500-1,000
Davenport-Moline-Rock Island MSA177,700187,200-9,500
Decatur MSA46,80050,400-3,600
Elgin Metro Division238,400262,500-24,100
Kankakee MSA44,20046,800-2,600
Lake-County-Kenosha County Metro Division389,300418,000-28,700
Peoria MSA152,800169,100-16,300
Rockford MSA138,300148,800-10,500
Springfield MSA103,400109,200-5,800
Illinois Section of St. Louis MSA234,300244,000-9,700
Illinois Statewide5,731,0006,150,100-419,100
*Preliminary | **Revised