Manufacturing is leading the way. Over the last year, manufacturing payrolls accounted for close to half of the total increase of jobs in Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced on Monday that the unemployment rate decreased by -0.1 percentage point to 4.8 percent in January and non-farm payrolls increased by +200 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. December jobs were revised down to show a slight drop (-700 jobs) rather than a slight gain as initially reported (+1,500 jobs).

The revised non-farm payroll figures revealed that Illinois surpassed its prior business cycle peak from September 2000 level in June 2017. In January 2018, Illinois non-farm payrolls were at a new high--0.4% above the prior peak.

In January, the 3 sectors of industry in Illinois with the largest gains in employment were (source: IDES):

  • Leisure and Hospitality (+4,000)
  • Education and Health Services (+1,700)
  • Financial Activities (+1,300)

The 3 sectors with the largest decline in jobs were (source: IDES)

  • Trade, Transportation & Utilities (-2,100)
  • Professional & Business Services (-1,800)
  • Construction (-1,100)

The state’s unemployment rate is +0.7 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for January 2018, which held at 4.1 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down -0.4 percentage points from a year ago when it
was 5.2 percent. The Illinois jobless rate last stood at 4.8 percent in May 2007.