Illinois Department of Employment Security

08/15/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/15/2019 11:11

Illinois Payrolls Hold Steady in July - Unemployment Rate Drops to 4.2 Percent

Contact: Sam Salustro |312-550-1582 mobile PDF Version

​8/15/19 - The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that nonfarm payrolls were about unchanged over-the-month, down -400 jobs, and the unemployment rate was 4.2 percent in July, down -0.1 percentage point from the prior month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. The June jobs increase was revised from the preliminary report (from +11,400 to +7,600 jobs).

Illinois payroll employment has shown variability since the beginning of the year, as have National payrolls. Average payroll employment growth in Illinois during the May to July three-month period, which provides a more stable measure of payroll employment change, was +3,100 jobs, with the largest gains in Leisure and Hospitality (+3,300), Educational and Health Services (+1,400) and Government (+700).

'This administration has been hard at work supporting our state's recent strong job growth with policies aimed at raising wages for workers while investing in education and workforce development,' said Deputy Governor Dan Hynes. 'Governor Pritzker recently signed a bipartisan budget and capital bill that restores fiscal responsibility to state government and makes the critical investments in our roads and bridges to ensure Illinois is well positioned for continued economic growth.'

'Illinois is home to an innovative business community and a talented workforce comprised of the hardest working people in the country. By signing legislation like the apprenticeship tax credit and the data center tax incentive, Governor Pritzker is laying the groundwork for continued job growth across the state,' said Erin Guthrie, Acting Director of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

Over-the-year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +62,700 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in July: Leisure and Hospitality (+22,100) and Educational and Health Services (+18,500) and Professional and Business Services (+8,400). The industry sectors with over-the-year declines were: Information (-5,200), Construction (-900) and Mining (-500). Illinois nonfarm payrolls were up +1.0 percent over-the-year as compared to the nation's +1.5 percent over-the-year gain in July.

The state's unemployment rate is +0.5 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for July 2019, which was 3.7 percent and unchanged from the previous month. The Illinois unemployment rate was unchanged from a year ago when it was 4.2 percent.

The number of unemployed workers decreased from the prior month, -1.7 percent to 272,600, and was down -0.7 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force was up +0.1 percentage point over-the-month and +0.6 percentage point over-the-year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment.

An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work. To help connect jobseekers to employers who are hiring, IDES' maintains the state's largest job search engine, IllinoisJoblink.com (IJL), which recently showed 60,334 posted resumes with 97,910 jobs available.

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Jobs - by Major Industry


  • 2014-2018 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, 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 Census Population Survey (CPS) and national benchmarking. For these reasons, the comments and tables citing unemployment rates in previous state 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: Illinois & Chicago Metropolitan Area Unemployment Rates
  • Monthly 1990-2018 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 at Not Seasonally Adjusted Jobs. 'Other Services' include activities in three broad categories: Personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations. Seasonally adjusted employment data for subsectors within industries are not available

About IDES : IDES encourages employment by connecting employers to jobseekers, provides unemployment insurance benefits to eligible individuals, produces labor market data and protects taxpayers from unemployment insurance fraud. Visit the Department's website at www.ides.illinois.gov for more information. You can also follow IDES on Twitter and Facebook.