Report: Illinois restoration is lagging behind the nation | Illinois

(The Center Square) – Illinois has been at its lowest point in terms of job losses a year ago and is recovering more slowly than any state but a handful.

A new analysis State job data from the Illinois Policy Institute shows that Illinois has created 408,400 jobs (+ 7.7%) since April 2020, or 7.7% of the jobs lost since then.

The only states that added a lower percentage of jobs were Nebraska (+ 7.5%), Louisiana (+ 7.5%), Iowa (+ 7.4%), Oklahoma (+ 5.9%), Wyoming (+ 4.7%) and New Mexico (+4.2.). %), says the report.

“The employment level in Illinois remains 424,800 below its pre-pandemic peak in January 2020, meaning Illinois regained less than half of the jobs lost during the pandemic,” the report said. “As a result, Illinois is struggling with one of the highest unemployment rates in the country.”

Work-friendliness and the severity of bans, two of the more politicized aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic, don’t seem to be the only determining factors. New York, which has seen some of the toughest containment measures, had regained 13.1% of its jobs since April 2020, the ninth best in the country. It is often measured against Florida, a tourism-heavy industry that has recovered 9.8% of its lost jobs.

Bryce Hill, chief data analyst for the IPI and author of the report, said Tuesday that the state’s well-rounded economy is outperforming others who may be more dependent on the tourism and services sectors but are struggling to reclaim the jobs they lost.

“Although we’ve seen fewer downsizing in other states, Illinois is still missing about 6.9% of the jobs it had before compared to pre-pandemic times,” he said. “This is the 37th worst place in the nation.”

Hill said that with the prospect of higher taxes and minimum wage costs, Illinois employers face one of the highest tax burdens in the country. Mark Grant, who heads the Illinois division of the National Federation of Independent Business, says these have long been creating jobs in the state, but there are several other factors.

“I’m not sure about other states, but here in Illinois our members say they are trying to hire but they are not getting as many applicants as they expected,” he said. “People may be staying home to look after children or older family members, or they may still be concerned about the coronavirus, but we believe that a major reason many people choose not to apply is the weekly Unemployment benefit is $ 300. “

Grant said the federal allowance was necessary when COVID forced companies to close or cut back and not hire, but as Illinois’ economy improved, “it discourages some people” from getting back on the workforce.

“Last spring, companies reduced their working hours and services because of the pandemic,” he said. “This spring it’s because they aren’t getting enough people to work.”

Comments are closed.