Unemployment in Evanston fell to 7.5 percent in October, down from 7.7 percent in September, but still higher than the 7.2 percent level of a year ago.

Data from the Illinois Department of Employment Security shows the city’s labor force continuing to shrink with 424 fewer people were employed in Evanston in October. The number of jobless people looking for work declined by 141, but 287 fewer people had jobs.

The unemployment rate for the Chicago metro area remained unchanged at 9.6 percent in October, up from 8.9 percent a year ago.

Statewide the jobless rate in October remained unchanged at 9.5 percent, up from 9 percent a year ago.

Ninteen of the nearly 100 towns in Illinois with more than 25,000 residents had lower jobless numbers than Evanston in October. The lowest rate, 6.6 percent, was found in Elmhurst and Wilmette. Glenview and Highland Park were next at 6.7 percent.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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