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March 24, 2009

Illinois Economy Continues to Contract Amid Ongoing National Employment Deterioration

CHICAGO – Illinois payroll employment declined by -37,200 jobs in February, the second largest over-the-month decrease on record (back to 1990), according to data released today by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).  Over the year, Illinois employers have reduced payrolls by -206,300 jobs.  The seasonally adjusted Illinois unemployment rate was 8.6 percent in February, up +0.8 points from the revised January rate of 7.8 percent.  The over-the month increase was the largest on record (back to 1976) and the rate hit its highest level since December 1991.  The number of unemployed persons in the state (570,100) continued its climb, reaching its highest level since November 1983.

“A national and local effort is needed to lift our country and our state from the depths of this recession,” said Maureen O’Donnell, director of the Illinois Department of Employment Security. “Nationally, we are beginning to see the fruits of the stimulus package. Locally, a capital program would put Illinoisans back to work and inject money into our economy.”

National payroll employment in February fell for the 14th consecutive month (-651,000), bringing total national job losses to -4.4 million since the recession began in December 2007.  The nation’s unemployment rate climbed to a 25-year high of 8.1 percent in February and the total number of unemployed persons swelled to 12.5 million.

In Illinois, the Manufacturing industry lost -16,400 jobs in February, its largest over-the-month decrease since January 1992.  Over the year, employment in this sector has dropped by -52,000 jobs, almost 8 percent of its total workforce.  Employment in the Professional and Business Services sector experienced its second decline in excess of 10,000 in the last four months, retreating by -12,300 jobs in February.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security administers federally funded employment services and unemployment insurance through its nearly 60 offices, including the Illinois workNet Centers. IDES also receives federal grants to provide and analyze labor market statistics and information.

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates
2009 January
2009 February
Illinois 8.6% 7.8%* 5.9%*
U.S. 8.1% 7.6% 4.8%
*  Revised

Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Non-Farm Jobs – by Major Industry
Industry Title February*
2009 January**
2009 February**
2008 Over the Month Change Over the Year
Total Non-Farm       5,782,700 5,819,900 5,989,000 -37,200 -206,300
Mining 10,200 10,300 9,900 -100 300
Construction       235,200 235,500 264,000 -300 -28,800
Manufacturing      616,600 633,000 668,600 -16,400 -52,000
Trade, Transportation, & Utilities 1,177,000 1,181,500 1,215,600 -4,500 -38,600
Information        111,400 112,500 116,000 -1,100 -4,600
Financial Activities 384,000 385,300 396,600 -1,300 -12,600
Professional and Business Services 815,600 827,900 875,500 -12,300 -59,900
Educational and Health Services 804,200 803,500 791,600 700 12,600
Leisure and Hospitality 514,200 516,800 533,500 -2,600 -19,300
Other Services     260,200 258,800 263,100 1,400 -2,900
Government          854,100 854,800 854,600 -700 -500
 *Preliminary      **Revised


• Seasonally-adjusted employment data for subsectors within industries are not available.
• “Other Services” includes a wide range of activities in three broad categories:  Personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations.  For a list of all activities under Other Services and all other industry sectors, go to http://www.census.gov/epcd/naics02/naico602.htm .
• For not-seasonally-adjusted jobs data showing greater industry detail, go to http://lmi.ides.state.il.us/cesfiles/cescurrent.htm .
• Monthly seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Illinois and the Chicago-Naperville-Joliet Metropolitan Division are available at:  http://lmi.ides.state.il.us/laus/icmaur.htm .
• Illinois monthly labor force, unemployed and unemployment rates for years 2004-2008 have been revised as required by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  In February of each year, monthly labor force data for all states are revised to reflect updated Census population controls, seasonal factors and state supplied non-farm jobs and UI claims inputs.  The revised monthly data are also smoothed to eliminate large changes as a result of volatility in the monthly household (CPS) survey.  Comments and tables distributed for prior monthly Illinois unemployment rate news releases should be discarded.  Any records and other historical analysis previously cited for Illinois labor force, number of unemployed and unemployment rates may no longer be valid under the revised monthly time series.




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