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Jobless Rate Increases in U.S.; Local Municipalities See Slight Rise in Recent Months

The unemployment rate is currently at 7.9 percent and has been relatively unchanged since September.

Unemployment rates in the United States increased slightly in January as economic growth remains slow.

Employees added 157,000 jobs last month throughout the United States. The nation's current jobless rate of 7.9 percent—which is up .1 percent from December—has remained relatively unchanged since September, according to United States Labor Department numbers released Friday. 

And while retail trade, construction, health care, and wholesale trade employees added jobs over the month, employment numbers for transportation and warehousing employees decreased, according to the Labor Department report. 

There is currently 12.3 million U.S. residents who are unemployed and even with the addition of 181,000 new jobs in 2012, the economy has seen little growth, according to a Reuters article.

To see substantial gains over 250,000 jobs would need to be added per month, economists told Reuters. 

Meanwhile, the number of long-term unemployed—which consists of those who have been without a job for more than 27 weeks —also remained relatively unchanged at 3.8 million in January and accounted for 38.1 percent of the total jobless rate, according U.S. Labor Department numbers

In Illinois, the jobless rate in December was 8.6 percent—up slightly from November when the unemployment rate was 8.3 percent, according to Illinois Department of Employment Security numbers released in recent weeks. January numbers were not yet available.

And while Algonquin and Lake in the Hills jobless numbers remain below the national average, the village's unemployment rates saw a slight increase in recent months.  

Algonquin had a 7.6 percent jobless rate in December, up from 7.3 percent in November. The jobless rate a year earlier was 9 percent. 

In Lake in the Hills, jobless numbers increased from 7.4 percent in November to 7.9 percent in December. That is down from 8.7 percent in December 2011. 

Some local municipalities have seen a steep jump in the number unemployed in recent months.

In Elgin, for example, the jobless rate increased by two percent from November to December—from 9.6 to 11.6 percent. In December 2011, Elgin's unemployment rate was 13.1 percent. 

Here is a look locally at December’s jobless rates:

County/Municipality December 2012 November 2012 December 2011 McHenry County 8.2 percent 7.5 percent 9 percent Algonquin 7.6 7.3 7.9 Lake in the Hills 7.9 7.4 8.7 Crystal Lake 8 7.5 8.3 Elgin 11.6 9.6 13.1 Carpentersville 12.8 9.2 14.3 Schaumburg 6.2 6.4 6.8 Chicago 9.7 9.8 10.6 McHenry 10.4 8.7 10.9

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