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State

Illinois unemployment falls below 8 percent

CHICAGO — Unemployment in Illinois dropped in April to its lowest level since 2008.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security said Thursday that unemployment dropped to 7.9 percent in April. That's down from 8.4 percent in March and the lowest rate the state has seen since December 2008.

The U.S. Department of Labor said earlier this month that national unemployment fell in April to 6.3 percent. Illinois unemployment is typically higher and the state has had one of the highest jobless rates in the country for some time.

The number of jobs in the state last month was down by less than 1 percent to 5.81 million. The department said the jobs figure comes from a different survey than the unemployment rate so the two can move independently.

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