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Unemployment drops to 4.2% in October in S.C.

Staff Report //November 20, 2020//

Unemployment drops to 4.2% in October in S.C.

Staff Report //November 20, 2020//

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South Carolina’s unemployment rate dropped from 5.2% in September to 4.2% in October.

 Unemployment in S.C.  MSAs for October  
MSA Jobless rate
Greenville-Mauldin 3.50%
Columbia 3.80%
Charleston-North Charleston 4.00%
Florence 4.30%

Source: S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce

According to S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce data, the estimated number of South Carolinians working increased by 27,830 people from September to October, climbing to 2,286,351. That is a decrease of 40,461 from October 2019.

The state’s unemployment estimates dropped by 24,787 from September to 100,333 in October, an increase of 44,089 from October 2019. South Carolina’s labor force, or people working plus unemployed people looking for work, increased to 2,386,684, up 3,043 since September and up 3,628 since October 2019.

Nationally, the unemployment rate dropped to 6.9% in October from 7.9% in September.

S.C. industries reported gains, including leisure and hospitality, which added 6,900 jobs, and education and health services (3,300). Losses occurred in trade, transportation and utilities (minus-2,400) and information and professional and business services (minus-100).

“This month’s release shows two very important things,” Dan Ellzey, DEW executive director, said in a statement. “First, the number of unemployed citizens dropped from 125,120 (September) to 100,333 (October). That is a decrease of approximately 25,000 unemployed people. And the important part is that these people left the ranks of the unemployed because they got a job, not because they gave up on looking for a job. At the same time that roughly 25,000 people left the ranks of the unemployed, approximately 28,000 additional South Carolinians became employed. That is a remarkable development.”

Ellzey said there are more than 81,000 jobs posted on DEW’s SC Works online services portal.

The unemployment rate dropped in every S.C. county in October. In Richland County, unemployment fell to 4.3% from 5.1% in September, while Lexington County saw a drop to 3% from 3.4% in October. In October 2019, unemployment stood at 2.3% in Richland County and 2% in Lexington County.