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Thursday, October 09, 2008


Illinois Jobs Decline for the 3rd Consecutive Month

The number of Illinois jobs fell by 3,500 in August, according to the state Department of Employment Security, making this the third consecutive month that businesses reduced the number of individuals they employee. This has not happened in the Illinois in over five years. As of last month, 5,976,100 people held jobs in the state.

Due to population growth, employers must create thousands of new jobs every month to keeping the unemployment rate steady and offer work to newcomers. Because of this, the drop in Illinois jobs also created a rise in unemployment.

Statistics from DES show that the state’s jobless rate increased from July’s 7.2 percent to 7.3 percent. According to the U.S. Labor Department, the national unemployment rate also rose to 6.1 percent. As of a year ago, the state’s unemployment rate was 5.2 percent, while the national average was 4.7 percent.

The area of employment that experienced the greatest decrease in Illinois jobs was trade, transportation and utilities, which lost around 3,300 jobs during the month of August. In July employers in the industry did away with 2,000 positions. Despite this, it remained the largest employer in the Illinois, with approximately 1,216,200 individuals working in this sector. Other industries that lost jobs last month include manufacturing, which did away with 700 jobs, and the government sector, where 1,000 jobs were done away with.

Employers in the construction industry added 900 new jobs statewide, which is surprising when one considers that the housing market crisis has severely injured this industry throughout the nation. Overall, construction in Illinois has lost 7,900 job during the last 12 months. As of last month, 261,900 people worked in this sector.

Another industry that increased the number of jobs it provided during the month of August was education and health services, which gained 500 new jobs. Due to the necessity of the work provided by this sector, it has remained almost unaffected by the struggling economy. Over the course of the last year, employers in Illinois have added 10,600 jobs in this industry, raising the number of individuals it employees to 791,100.


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