A new analysis shows Illinois ranks 41st in the country in unemployment recovery, with unemployment down 40 percent from this time last year.
The study was done by WalletHub and shows Illinois’ job recovery post-pandemic. The survey was conducted from March 15, 2021, to August 30, 2021, showing a 69 percent decrease in unemployment claims compared to that time frame in 2020.
All 50 states were ranked 1-50 based on job recovery. Arkansas ranked at the top of the list with South Carolina and Arizona. New Mexico was at the bottom. According to Jill Gonzalez of WalletHub, Illinois has seen a decrease in unemployment claims. but is still recovering at a slower rate than other states.
“Illinois ranks 41st in the nation in recovery over the last week,” Gonzalez said. “But since they start of the pandemic it ranks 43rd, which means they have stayed pretty steady in unemployment claims since last March.”
Illinois’ unemployment rate fell in August from 7.1% to 7%. When comparing the states recovery to the countries recovery the state continued to fall behind, as the national unemployment rate fell from 5.4% to 5.2%.
Illinois is also showing a slower recovery rate than other states in the Midwest with only Indiana, Michigan and Ohio recovering at a slower pace.
While many Midwestern states are toward the bottom of this list, Gonzalez said these numbers have more to do with industries and policies than regionality.
“There is not a regional trend here,” Gonzalez said. “It is much more industry based and policy based and thats the reason we update these rankings from week to week because things are always changing.”
Of the industries that added jobs, the leisure and hospitality grew the most with 5,800 payroll jobs added and the manufacturing industry gained 3,900 jobs over the last month.
While some industries are starting to return to normalcy, others are still feeling the impact of COVID-19. The educational and health services lost 4,900 jobs and the trade, transportation and utilities industries lost 2,300 jobs according to the Illinois Department of Employment Services.
Illinois ranks No. 43 in the nation in job recovery since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.