The number of Evanston unemployed fell slightly in August versus July, according to data recently released from the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES). 

About 3,700 residents were unemployed in August, down about 100 from July.  However, current Evanston unemployment figures are three times higher than last year and above the peak reached during the great recession 10 years ago.  The number of unemployed persons in Evanston rose steadily through June 2009, remained above 3,000 for more than a year, and peaked at 3,590 in July 2010.

The official unemployment rate for Evanston was 10.2% in August, flat with July, but sharply higher than 3.1% in August of last year.

The official unemployment rate, U3, is a narrow measure of unemployment.  U3 defines unemployed as people who are willing and able to work and have actively sought employment within the past four weeks. 

U6, a broader measure of unemployment which includes discouraged and under-employed workers, is much higher but not reported for individual cities.  For the total U.S., U6 was 14.2% in August, or 580 basis points higher than the official rate of 8.4%.