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QC Unemployment Rose Slightly in February

Unemployment in the Quad Cities edged up in February - rising from 4.3 per cent a year ago to 4.6 per cent last month.

Tom Austin from the Illinois Department of Employment Security says the increase of three-tenths of one per cent works out to nearly 600 more people considered unemployed in February, to 8,600.

"When we see the non-farm payrolls that point to employment gains which then builds up positive aspects of the economy. And people then do tend to start looking more when they see job gains but overall when they see the unemployment rate decline."

During the past year, the Quad Cities gained 1,800 jobs, with increases in leisure and hospitality, education and health services, and manufacturing. Jobs were lost however in retail, financial activities, and professional and business services.

Statewide in Illinois in February, unemployment increased in 5 metro areas, went town in 7, and there was no change in two.