Illinois hit a new record low in unemployment last month, according to statistics announced yesterday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. The unemployment rate was at 4%, down nearly a quarter of a percentage point from the previous month based on preliminary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The August unemployment rate was the lowest monthly unemployment rate for the state on record. N onfarm payrolls were stable compared to the prior month, down -1,400 jobs. The July monthly change in payrolls was revised from the preliminary report from being down 400 to up 1,300 jobs.
The state’s unemployment rate is a third of a percentage point higher than the national unemployment rate reported for August 2019, which was 3.7 percent and unchanged from the previous month.
IDES Spokesman Sam Salustro details how Illinois’ job growth is happening right now. “We’ve continued to see good, strong job growth over the past number of months now, and we’ve seen an increase in the labor force at the same exact time. When you continue to grow jobs and people keep finding jobs, your unemployment rate drops. We continue to see strong growth in our Educational & Health Services fields, and over the past three months, we’ve also seen strong growth in our Government and Financial Services sectors.”
People within Governor J.B. Pritzker’s administration say the job growth has been attributed to the passing of a balanced budget, the capital infrastructure bill, as well as the worker minimum wage laws. The Illinois Unemployment rate a year ago was 4.2%. The unemployment rate is defined by those out of work and are currently seeking employment. It does not account for those who have stopped actively looking for employment.