CHICAGO (AP) — Unemployment rates dropped in every Illinois county in January for the second straight month.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security says a consecutive decline in every county hasn’t happened since the agency started keeping records in 1974. The data released Thursday compares January of this year with January 2010.

The department reports that the unemployment rate also dropped in all metropolitan areas for the fifth consecutive month.

One of the largest drops was in the Rockford area, which reported a 13.7 percent unemployed rate compared with 19 percent last year. The Chicago area dropped from 11.6 last year to 9.4 percent this year. The Danville area dropped from 14.7 percent to 11.2 percent.

Employment Security director Maureen O’Donnell says it’s more encouraging news about the state’s economy.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press


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