Local Business

County's unemployment rate falls to 7.4 percent

CRYSTAL LAKE – McHenry County’s unemployment rate fell to 7.4 percent in December, down from 8.3 percent in December 2013 but higher than November's 6.9 percent, according to preliminary figures released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Illinois Department of Employment Security. 

The jobless rate in Crystal Lake was 7.1 percent last month, compared with 8 percent during the same month in 2012, IDES spokesman Greg Rivara said. Other jobless numbers showed Algonquin at 6.9 percent, down from 7.6 percent; McHenry at 7.5 percent, down from 8.3 percent; and Lake in the Hills at 7.1 percent, down from 7.9 percent.

Carpentersville’s unemployment rate stood at 11.5 percent in December, compared with 12.7 percent in December 2012.

Unemployment rates increased in almost all of Illinois' dozen metro areas in December. The department reported unemployment fell only in the Chicago-Joliet-Naperville and Davenport-Moline-Rock Island areas. The Chicago rate dropped from 8.6 percent in December 2012 to 8.2 percent last month. In the Rock Island area, the jobless rate dropped to 6.8 percent.

The department blamed the ongoing slowdown in manufacturing for many job losses. Unemployment increased the most in Danville, where the rate rose from 10 percent to 12.2 percent, and in Peoria, where the jobless rate jumped 1 percent to 9.2 percent. Both cities rely on manufacturing.

Earlier this month, the department reported statewide unemployment fell to 8.6 percent.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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