The jobless rate in Evanston fell to 6.3 percent in December -- the lowest level here in 19 months.
The Illinois Department of Employment Security says it dropped from a revised level of 6.6 percent in November.
But the decline in the rate masked the disappointing news that the size of the workforce shrank more than the decline in the number of people looking for work.
The number of people looking for work fell by 93, but the workforce shrank by 216 people, leaving a net loss of 123 people with jobs in an Evanston workforce that now totals 41,488 people.
A year ago Evanston's jobless rate was 6.5 percent.
The jobless rate across the Chicago metro area rose from 8.1 percent to 8.3 percent, while the rate for all of Illinois rose from 8.3 percent to 8.6 percent in December.
Of the roughly 100 communities in Illinois with more than 25,000 residents, 17 had jobless rates lower than Evanston in October -- led by Glenview at 5.1 percent rate, Northbrook at 5.4 percent rate and Wilmette at 5.5 percent.
Skokie's jobless rate in December was 6.5 percent.