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Bloomington-Normal's jobless rate ticks up to 4.2%, still the lowest for any metro area in Illinois

A hiring sign is displayed at a restaurant in Mount Prospect, Ill., Sunday, March 19, 2023.
Nam Y. Huh
AP file
The Bloomington-Normal area's jobless rate climbed to 4.2% in March, up from 3.6% this time a year ago. It's still the lowest for any metro area in the state.

The Bloomington-Normal labor market saw the second highest unemployment rate increase in the state in March. The increase was more than half a point.

The 4.2% jobless rate is still the lowest among major Illinois metro areas. And the Illinois Department of Employment Security reports the workforce in the McLean-Dewitt county area grew by 1,000 jobs in the last 12-month period. Chicago had the largest increase in the jobless rate in the state.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported nonfarm payroll declines in the Twin City area in Professional-Business Services (-500), Financial Activities (-400), Retail Trade (-200) and Leisure-Hospitality (-200).

Increases came in Government (+1,000), Manufacturing (+800), Private Education-Health Services (+200), Mining-Construction (+100), Other Services (+100) and Wholesale Trade (+100).

Over the year, total nonfarm jobs increased in nine metropolitan areas in Illinois, decreased in four, and was unchanged in one for the 12-month period.

"Job growth continues to reach areas in every corner of the state throughout industries, creating new and expanded job opportunities for Illinois workers," said Deputy Governor Andy Manar.

Over the year, the unemployment rate increased in 11 metropolitan areas, decreased in two, and remained unchanged in one.

WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.