Unemployment rates in the United States increased slightly in January as economic growth remains slow.
Employees added 157,000 jobs last month throughout the United States. The nation's current jobless rate of 7.9 percent—which is up .1 percent from December—has remained relatively unchanged since September, according to United States Labor Department numbers released Friday.
And while retail trade, construction, health care, and wholesale trade employees added jobs over the month, employment numbers for transportation and warehousing employees decreased, according to the Labor Department report.
There is currently 12.3 million U.S. residents who are unemployed and even with the addition of 181,000 new jobs in 2012, the economy has seen little growth, according to a Reuters article.
To see substantial gains over 250,000 jobs would need to be added per month, economists told Reuters.
Meanwhile, the number of long-term unemployed—which consists of those who have been without a job for more than 27 weeks —also remained relatively unchanged at 3.8 million in January and accounted for 38.1 percent of the total jobless rate, according U.S. Labor Department numbers.
In Illinois, the jobless rate in December was 8.6 percent—up slightly from November when the unemployment rate was 8.3 percent, according to Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) numbers released in recent weeks. January numbers were not yet available.
The City of Highland Park's jobless numbers remain well below the national average, though in December the rate increased .1 percent over November.
IDES did not list figures for Deerfield, Lake Forest or Lake Bluff.
The rate also dropped slightly from November when it was at 6.5 percent.
Here's a look at the latest jobless rates:County/Municipality December 2012 November 2012 December 2011 Lake County 8.7 percent 7.7 percent 9.5 percent Cook County 8.9 8.8 9.7 Chicago 9.7 9.8 10.6 Highland Park 5.7 5.6 6.0