Unemployment in Bloomington-Normal was a half a point higher in January than at the same point the year before at 8.2%. The State Department of Employment Security says the Peoria area jobless rate of 9.4% is an improvement of four tenths of a point from the same month in 2011. Bloomington Normal had 1,500 fewer jobs in January than the year before. Government and retail trade registered the largest declines. Peoria was up by 2,700 jobs. Manufacturing, transportation, and the education and health service sectors all grew in the Peoria area. IDES Director Jay Rowell says statewide job growth continues.
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