Department of Numbers

Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, Illinois Unemployment

The BLS reported that the unemployment rate for Chicago rose 0.2 percentage points in December 2015 to 6.0%. For the same month, the metro unemployment rate was 0.1 percentage points higher than the Illinois rate. The unemployment rate in Chicago peaked in January 2010 at 11.4% and is now 5.4 percentage points lower. From a post peak low of 5.4% in September 2015, the unemployment rate has now grown by 0.6 percentage points. You can also compare Chicago unemployment with unemployment in other cities.

Unemployment Rate December 2015 Month/Month Year/Year
National 5.0% 0.0 -0.6
Illinois 5.9% +0.2 -0.3
Chicago 6.0% +0.2 -0.1
Note: Metro level data is now seasonally adjusted.1 All comparisons are made with December 2015 data as January metro level unemployment data has not yet been released.

Unemployment Rate: Chicago, Illinois, National

Chicago, Illinois monthly unemployment rate chart

Note: Recessions shown in gray.

Chicago, Illinois Unemployed

The number of people unemployed in Chicago peaked in March 2010 at 559,001. There are now 265,061 fewer people unemployed in the metropolitan area. From a recent trough of 261,902 in September 2015, the number of unemployed has now grown by 32,038. Chicago employment and jobs data (including jobs lost/gained in Chicago, Illinois) is also available.

Unemployed Persons December 2015 Month/Month Year/Year
Chicago 293,940 +10,058 -3,668

Number of Unemployed Persons

Chicago, Illinois Unemployment History

Date National
Unemployment Rate
Illinois
Unemployment Rate
Chicago
Unemployment Rate
Chicago
Unemployed
January
2016
4.9%
December
2015
5.0% 5.9% 6.0% 293,940
November
2015
5.0% 5.7% 5.8% 283,882
October
2015
5.0% 5.4% 5.5% 269,072
September
2015
5.1% 5.4% 5.4% 261,902
August
2015
5.1% 5.6% 5.5% 270,750
July
2015
5.3% 5.8% 5.6% 272,022
June
2015
5.3% 5.9% 5.7% 276,739
May
2015
5.5% 6.0% 6.0% 292,669
April
2015
5.4% 6.0% 6.0% 290,199
March
2015
5.5% 6.0% 6.2% 301,347
February
2015
5.5% 6.0% 6.2% 303,357

1. Metro area unemployment rates are now seasonally adjusted. The BLS has started publishing smoothed seasonally adjusted metropolitan area data which makes comparisons to state and national data more relevant than the unadjusted numbers.