Jobless rate down in most area counties
August unemployment rates fell from a year earlier in nine of 11 area counties, the Illinois Department of Employment Security reported.
The only counties where the August rate did not drop were Piatt, where the rate remained at 8 percent, and Vermilion, where the rate rose from 10.6 percent to 11.3 percent.
In Danville, Vermilion's county seat, the unemployment rate increased from 11.6 percent to 14 percent.
The August rates were down in all 11 counties when compared with July rates. However, July and August rates aren't directly comparable because the figures aren't adjusted for seasonal variations.
Champaign County's unemployment rate was 8.4 percent in August, down from 9 percent in July. An estimated 7,882 people in Champaign County were out of work and seeking a job in August, while 86,117 were employed, according to the department.
In August 2012, Champaign County's unemployment rate was 9 percent. Since then, the county has added jobs in government, construction, leisure-hospitality and professional-business services, among others. But there are fewer jobs in retail trade, manufacturing and financial activities.
Vermilion County's unemployment rate was 11.3 percent in August, down from 11.8 percent in July. The department said 4,020 people in Vermilion County were out of a job and seeking work in August, while 31,415 were employed.
In August 2012, Vermilion County's unemployment rate was 10.6 percent. Since then, the county has added jobs in construction, wholesale trade, financial activities and leisure-hospitality. But it has lost jobs in manufacturing, government, professional-business services and educational-health services.
Here are the August rates for other area counties, along with the changes from July, followed by the August 2012 rates in parentheses:
— Coles, 9, down from 10.3 (9.8).
— DeWitt, 7.4, down from 8.3 (8).
— Douglas, 7.1, down from 7.8 (8.2).
— Edgar, 8.4, down from 9.1 (9.6).
— Ford, 8.1, down from 8.7 (9).
— Iroquois, 7.4, down from 8 (8.4).
— McLean, 7.2, down from 7.8 (7.3).
— Moultrie, 6.9, down from 7.8 (7.6).
— Piatt, 8, down from 8.7 (8).
The unemployment rate for the city of Champaign was 8.7 percent in August, down from 9.2 percent in July.
Urbana's rate was 9.4 percent in August, down from 10.1 percent in July.
"Schools returning from summer break helped push down unemployment rates across the state, but not enough in some areas to make up for temporary weakness in the global manufacturing market," said department director Jay Rowell in a release.