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Jobs Up in Majority of Metro Areas in February

Announcement – Thursday, March 28, 2024

Contact: Rebeca Cisco  |  217-524-1219  |  PDF Version


SPRINGFIELD – Over-the-year, total nonfarm jobs increased in eleven metropolitan areas and decreased in three for the year ending February 2024, according to data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (DES).  Over- the-year, the unemployment rate increased in all fourteen metropolitan areas.

“Today’s data continues to highlight the health and expansion of the Illinois labor market, with increases in jobs throughout a multitude of industries touching every corner of the state,” said Deputy Governor Andy Manar.  “As growth continues to supply jobseekers and employers with new opportunities, IDES and its workforce partners are positioned to assist both groups to thrive in the state’s economy.”

The metro areas which had the largest over-the-year percentage increases in total nonfarm jobs were the Champaign-Urbana MSA (+3.2%, +3,900), the Elgin Metro (+2.1%, +5,300), and the Bloomington MSA (+1.4%, +1,400).  Total nonfarm jobs in the Chicago Metro were almost unchanged (0.0%, +1,400).  The metro areas which had over-the-year decreases in total nonfarm jobs were the Decatur MSA (-3.3%, -1,600), the Springfield MSA (-3.0%, -3,300), and the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island IA-IL MSA (-0.9%, -1,600).  Industries that saw job growth in most metro areas included: Government (thirteen areas); Mining and Construction and Education and Health Services (ten areas each); Wholesale Trade and Other Services (eight areas each).

The metro areas with the largest unemployment rate increases were the Chicago Metro (+0.8 point to 5.1%), the Decatur MSA (+0.5 point to 6.4%), and the Illinois section of St. Louis MSA (+0.5 point to 4.6%).

Unemployment Rates (Not Seasonally Adjusted) - See PDF

Total Nonfarm Jobs (Not Seasonally Adjusted) - February 2024  - See PDF

About the Department of Employment Security

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) provides vital employment services to Illinois workers, employers, and job seekers with resources including Job Fairs and, analyzes and disseminates actionable Labor Market Information, and administers the Unemployment Insurance Program. To see the full range of services provided by IDES, and for the latest news concerning the department, visit