The Chicago-area unemployment rate dropped to 8 percent in September, the lowest rate in four years and down from 10.1 percent a year ago, the Illinois Department of Employment Security reported Thursday.

The Chicago area’s unemployment rate stood at 8.8 percent in August.

All areas of the state had declines in unemployment from a year ago, and all are seeing their lowest unemployment rates since September 2008, said IDES spokesman Greg Rivara.

The largest declines in unemployment were Rockford, down 2.6 points to 11 percent from 13.6 percent a year ago, followed by Chicago metro and Kankakee-Bradley, down 1.3 points to 10.5 percent from last September’s 11.8 percent.

The Chicago area saw the largest year-over-year growth, a 4.4 percent increase, in jobs in professional and business services such as accounting, bookkeeping, architectural services and at companies that supply temporary workers to client businesses, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Other significant increases were the hospitality industry, up 2.7 percent year-over-year, and manufacturing, up 2.6 percent, the BLS data showed.



BY SANDRA GUY Business Reporter


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