Unemployment increases in seven of 12 Illinois metro areas

By WEEK Producer

MGN online

April 25, 2013 Updated Apr 25, 2013 at 1:37 PM CDT

CHICAGO, Ill. -- Unemployment rates in March increased in seven of 12 Illinois metro areas compared to March 2012. However, the rate remained unchanged in Bloomington-Normal at 6.9 percent.

That's according to preliminary data released Thursday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

The Peoria area saw one of the largest increases with unemployment up .9 percent from the same time last year. The non-seasonally adjusted rate sits at 8.9 percent.

St. Louis' Metro East and the Quad Cities saw the largest decreases in unemployment. The rates there dropped to 8.9 percent and 7.2 percent respectively.

Jobs increased in five metro areas. The largest increases were seen in Rockford, where 2,600 jobs (1.8 percent) were added in March, and Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, where 45,800 jobs (1.3 percent) were added.