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Area County's Jobless Rate Improves in March

Iroquois and Ford County’s jobless rates fell in March; the last report showing all of Illinois’ metro areas falling.  It’s the first time all of the state’s metro areas showed a marked-decline since 2011.

McLean County unemployment fell to 6.7 percent in March, down from 7 percent in March 2011, according to data released Thursday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

This marks the first time since 2009 that the March jobless rate in McLean County was 6.7 percent or lower, data show.

For the first time since May 2011, all of the state’s metropolitan areas saw a drop in unemployment.

Greg Rivara of the Employment Security Office (IDES) said “The falling rates across the board are another piece of information that tells us that the economy is improving.”  Rivara said “That improvement still could improve in coming months or it could kick back up.”

The jobless rate identifies those who are out of work and actively looking for work regardless of unemployment benefits.

Other Central Illinois counties and their March 2012 (March 2011) rates are: DeWitt, 8.1 percent (9.1 percent); Ford, 8.7 percent (11 percent); Iroquois, 9.2 percent (10.1 percent); LaSalle, 11.2 percent (12.4 percent); Livingston, 8.2 percent (9.6 percent); Logan, 7.9 percent (8.6 percent); Tazewell, 7.6 percent (9 percent); and Woodford, 6.6 percent (7.7 percent).


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