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Bloomington-Normal has Illinois’ lowest unemployment, but the data still show job losses

Rivian plant.jpg
Rivian
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Rivian has topped 3,000 employees at its plant in Normal, but economic developers have suggested some of the jobs haven't been included in the data yet, partly because some are not yet in permanent housing.

Bloomington-Normal's unemployment rate has fallen to the lowest in the state, but the Twin Cities still lags almost every other metro area in the state for job creation.

According to data from the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), Bloomington-Normal (-500) and Rockford (-300) are the only metro areas in Illinois that have lost jobs from September 2020 to last month.

Bloomington-Normal biggest job losses were in finance (-1,100) and government (-400). The area added jobs in leisure and hospitality (+500), construction (+400), education and health services (+300) and transportation, utilities and warehousing (+100).

The Twin Cities has 88,100 jobs on payrolls as of Sept. 2020, compared to 87,600 now, according to IDES. The area's unemployment rate dropped to 4%. That’s down from 5.8% last September.

Patrick Hoban with the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council has said all the new hires at electric-vehicle maker Rivian and other employers don't appear in the data yet because many are not yet in permanent housing, due in part to the area's housing shortage.

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