Coles, Champaign jobless rates up; most in area fall
CHAMPAIGN — Unemployment rates in Champaign and Coles counties inched up in May, but most other counties in East Central Illinois saw their rates drop.
Champaign County's rate rose from 7 percent in April to 7.1 percent in May, while Coles County's rate climbed from 7.8 percent to 8.5 percent.
Meanwhile, Vermilion County's rate fell from 9.3 percent in April to 8.9 percent. Six other area counties had rate drops in May, while two saw virtually no change.
Here are the May rates for other area counties:
— DeWitt, 7.1, down from 7.4 in April.
— Douglas, 7.1, down from 7.2.
— Edgar, 8.2, down from 8.4.
— Ford, 7.5, down from 7.8.
— Iroquois, 7.2, down from 7.5.
— McLean, 6.2, unchanged.
— Moultrie, 6.5, unchanged.
— Piatt, 7.2, down from 7.3.
The Illinois Department of Employment Security estimated 7,089 people in Champaign County were out of work and looking for a job in May, while 93,002 were working.
In a promising sign, both the number of employed people in Champaign County and the number of people in the county's labor force were the highest they've been so far this year, according to department statistics.
In Vermilion County, an estimated 3,128 people were out of work and looking for a job in May, while 32,209 county residents were employed.
Among area cities, Champaign saw its rate rise from 6.8 percent to 7 percent in May, while Urbana went from 7.3 percent to 7.7 percent. Danville's rate dropped from 10 percent to 9.2 percent.
Statewide, the counties with the lowest unemployment rates were in west central Illilnois — Brown at 3.9 percent and Adams at 5.6 percent. The county with the highest rate was Alexander in far southern Illinois, at 11 percent, followed by Winnebago County in northern Illinois at 10.5 percent.
The Champaign-Urbana metro area had a 7.1 percent unemployment rate, the fifth-lowest among Illinois metro areas, behind Bloomington-Normal, Springfield, the Quad Cities and Peoria.
The Danville metro area had an 8.9 percent unemployment rate, the fourth-highest among Illinois metro areas. The highest was in Rockford, followed by Kankakee-Bradley and Decatur.