* Halfway decent news for a change. From IDES…
The Illinois unemployment rate hit a new five-year low in April when it fell to 7.9 percent, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Illinois Department of Employment Security. More people working pushed the rate down 0.5 points, the lowest since December 2008 and largest monthly decline in the history of this data series which began in 1976. […]
In April 2014, the number of unemployed individuals fell -35,700 (-6.5 percent) to 516,000. Total unemployed has fallen -237,500 (-31.5 percent) since January 2010 when the rate peaked at 11.4 percent. The unemployment rate fell even though preliminary estimates indicate 7,800 fewer private sector jobs in April and 29,300 more jobs than one year ago. The unemployment rate and job creation numbers can move independently of each other because they come from different surveys.
The unemployment rate is in line with other economic touch points. First-time jobless claims have been trending lower for the past four years and at 48,697 in April are 20 percent lower than one year ago. Numbers from the independent Conference Board’s Help Wanted OnLine Survey show Illinois employers in April advertised for more than 200,000 jobs (201,500 seasonally adjusted) and 85 percent sought full-time employment.
Illinois employers added +249,600 private sector jobs since the low point of employment in Illinois. Leading sectors are Professional and Business Services (+114,600, +14.6 percent); Education and Health Services (+55,900, +6.8 percent); and Leisure and Hospitality (+38,000, +7.4 percent). Government (-25,600, -3.0 percent) continues to lead job loss.
* However, Illinois has lost 8,900 manufacturing jobs in the past twelve months, according to IDES, including a whopping 3,500 last month alone.
And while 20,000 new jobs were gained in the professional and business services category during the past 12 months, 7,100 jobs in that category disappeared in April.