County jobless rate climbs to 9.3 percent

McHenry County’s unemployment rate hit 9.3 percent in March, up from 9.1 percent a year ago, according to preliminary data released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

The jobless rate in Crystal Lake was 8.6 percent compared with 8.5 percent in March 2012, said IDES spokesman Greg Rivara. Other jobless numbers showed Algonquin at 8.4 percent, up from 7.7 percent a year ago; McHenry, 9.2 percent, down from 9.4 percent; and Lake in the Hills, 9 percent, up from 8.7 percent. Carpentersville’s jobless rate increased to 14.9 percent compared with 13.9 percent in March 2012.

In Kane County, the jobless rate rose to 10.3 percent in March, up from 9.8 percent in March 2012.

March local unemployment rates increased in seven of 12 metro areas, decreased in four, and were unchanged in one compared to last year, according to the IDES.

The largest increases were in: Decatur MSA, up 1.4 percent to 11.8 percent; Danville MSA, up 1.1 percent to 10.8 percent; and Peoria MSA, up 0.9 percent to 8.9 percent. The Chicago-Joliet-Naperville Metropolitan Division increased from 9 to 9.5 percent. The largest decreases were Metro East, from 8.9 to 8 percent; and the Quad Cities, from 7.7 to 7.2 percent.

Jobs increased in five metros and decreased in seven. Largest increases: Rockford, up 1.8 percent, 2,600 jobs; Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, up 1.3 percent, 45,800 jobs; and Kankakee-Bradley, up 1.2 percent, 500 jobs. Industry sectors increasing in the most metros were educational and health services (nine of 12), financial activities (eight of 12), and transportation, warehousing and utilities (seven of 12).

Not seasonally adjusted data compares the current month to the same month of the previous year. The March 2013 not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 9.4 percent and 12.2 percent at its peak in this economic cycle in January 2010. Nationally, the unemployment rate was 7.6 percent in March and 10.6 percent in January 2010 at its peak. The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and looking for work and is not tied to collecting unemployment insurance benefits.