Jobless rate the same despite job gains in MI

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey's economy lost 7,500 jobs in April and the unemployment rate ticked up to 4.7 percent from 4.4 percent in March.

This marked the third consecutive month that Michigan's unemployment rate remained at or below 4.8 percent and the fourth month in a row with rates below 5.0 percent. The portion of jobs that are full-time is lower than it was before the Great Recession began. That's about 42,000 below the average over the first four months in 2015.

New Jersey's unemployment rate has fallen by 1.3 percentage points over the previous year, according to a news release from the state Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Despite an ongoing state budget crisis which is squeezing many colleges and social services agencies, IL continues to see job growth and an expanding labor force. The state released the seasonally adjusted, preliminary jobs estimates from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics as part of its April Monthly Employment Report. Those increases were offset by a loss of 3,000 jobs in each of the government, construction and leisure and hospitality sectors, and 2,000 jobs in the trade, transportation and utilities sector. When the state hit its peak unemployment rate of 11.2 percent at the start of 2010, there were 743,000 unemployed people.

Illinois remains 43,000 jobs short of its peak employment level reached in September 2000 and is one of just three states in the country that have not regained peak employment, Illinois Department of Commerce Director Sean McCarthy said in the release.

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