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Statewide Unemployment Rate Down, Payroll Jobs Up in April

Announcement – Thursday, May 19, 2022

Contact: Will Gomberg | 312.793.9376
PDF Version

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate fell    -0.1 percentage point to 4.6 percent, while nonfarm payrolls increased by +9,300 in April, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. The March monthly change in payrolls was revised from the preliminary report, from +18,300 to +17,200 jobs. The March unemployment rate was unchanged from the preliminary report, remaining at 4.7 percent. The April payroll jobs estimate and unemployment rate reflects activity for the week including the 12th.

In April, the industry sectors with the largest over-the-month gains in employment were: Leisure and Hospitality (+7,300), Manufacturing (+5,700), and Educational and Health Services (+3,500). The industry sectors that reported the largest monthly payroll declines were: Professional and Business (-11,100), Financial Activities (-2,200),  and Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-1,700).

“Illinois’ economy is continuing on a strong positive trajectory,” said Deputy Governor Andy Manar. “Through collaboration with local partners, employers, and job seekers, we are strengthening our workforce system for the long run. Businesses and workers are encouraged to visit Get Hired Illinois to view helpful resources today.”

“Not only does the unemployment rate continue to decline in Illinois, but a growing percentage of Illinoisans are participating in the workforce,” said DCEO Director Sylvia I. Garcia. “As job numbers in key industries such as manufacturing and hospitality continue to increase, DCEO continues to focus on an equitable recovery with workforce development programs like the Job Training and Economic Development program, announced this week, that focuses on increasing access for underserved and underrepresented communities to good paying careers.”

The state’s unemployment rate was +1.0 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for April, which was 3.6 percent, unchanged from the previous month. The Illinois unemployment rate was down -2.0 percentage points from a year ago when it was at 6.6 percent.

Compared to a year ago, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +235,800 jobs, with gains across nearly all major industries. The industry groups with the largest jobs increases were: Leisure and Hospitality (+84,300), Professional and Business Services (+46,300), and Trade, Transportation and Utilities (+45,700). The Mining sector reported no over-the-year change in payroll employment. In April, total nonfarm payrolls were up +4.1 percent over-the-year in Illinois and up +4.6 percent in the nation.

The number of unemployed workers was down from the prior month, a -0.9 percent decrease to 296,400 and was down -29.2 percent over the same month one year ago. The labor force was up +0.3 percent over-the-month and up +2.3 percent over-the-year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and seeking employment. An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work.

In May 2020, Governor Pritzker launched Get Hired Illinois, a new one-stop-shop website to help connect job seekers with hiring employers in real time. The site features virtual job fairs, no-cost virtual training, and includes (IJL), the state’s largest job search engine, which recently showed 44,422 posted resumes with 175,677 available jobs. 

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates 
-See PDF -

Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Jobs – by Major Industry
-See PDF-

  • Monthly 2017-2021 seasonally adjusted labor force data for Illinois, and all other states, have been revised as required by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).  The monthly historical revisions to state labor force estimates reflect new national benchmark controls, state working-age population controls, outlier specifications, seasonal factors, as well as updated total nonfarm jobs and unemployment benefits claims inputs.  Illinois labor force data were also smoothed to eliminate large monthly changes as a result of volatility in the monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) and national benchmarking. For these reasons, the comments and tables citing unemployment rates in previous news releases/materials may no longer be valid.
  • Monthly seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Illinois and the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division are available here.
  • Monthly 2017-2021 seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll employment data for Illinois have been revised. To control for potential survey error, the estimates are benchmarked annually to universal counts derived primarily from unemployment insurance tax reports.
  • Not seasonally adjusted jobs data with industry detail are available here. “Other Services” include activities in three broad categories: personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations.  Seasonally adjusted data for subsectors within industries are not available.