Unemployment rose sharply in Evanston last month. The number of people with jobs increased, but the number looking for work grew twice as much.

The jobless rate hit 8.4 percent — its highest level here in more than three years and up from 7.3 percent in May.

The unemployment rate for the three-state Chicago metro region also rose, from 9.1 to 10.1 percent, as did that state rate, from 8.7 to 9.8 percent.

In June 249 more Evanstonians had jobs than in May, but 509 more people were looking for work.

The jobless rate here typically rises in June as new high school and college graduates enter the labor force.

Among the nearly 100 Illinois communities with a population of 25,000 or more, Highland Park had the lowest unemployment rate in June at 6.2 percent. Wilmette was at 7.2 percent and Glenview at 7.4 percent. In all, 29 towns on the list had a lower jobless rate than Evanston in June.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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