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Chicago area unemployment rises to 9.9%

Updated: March 14, 2013 4:15PM

The unemployment rate in the Chicago metropolitan area jumped to 9.9 percent in January from 9.5 percent a year earlier, according to a report released Thursday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

The non-seasonally adjusted report showed the rate jumped from 8.6 percent in December 2012.

The area created 56,700 jobs since January 2012 — a spike from the 37,800 created year-over year in December.

“Increases in the unemployment rate and newly created jobs are expected each January,” IDES Director Jay Rowell said in a statement. “The new year encourages employers to hire and workers to re-energize their work search.”

The report showed the jobless rate increased year-over-year in seven of 12 metropolitan areas, fell in three and was unchanged in two.

The highest unemployment rate in the state was in the Decatur area at 14 percent, up from 11.1 percent a year earlier; the Rockford area at 13 percent, down from 13.2 percent; and the Kankakee-Bradley area at 12.8 percent, unchanged from January 2012.

The biggest job losses were reported in the Illinois section of the St. Louis metropolitan area, down 2,400; and the Decatur area, down 1,900.

Behind Chicago, the biggest job gains were reported in the Rockford area, which added 2,800; ad the Champaign-Urbana area,which added 2,600.

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