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SC posts 9th straight drop in unemployment rate

The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce reported the state's ninth...
The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce reported the state's ninth consecutive monthly drop in the unemployment rate.((Source: WIS))
Published: Oct. 22, 2021 at 10:15 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - The unemployment rate for the state of South Carolina fell slightly in September, according to a just-released report from the Department of Employment and Workforce.

September’s drop to 4.1% from August’s 4.2% is the ninth consecutive month in which the unemployment rate fell, SCDEW Executive Director Dan Ellzey said.

“In contrast to the nation, there has also been a steady rise of people reentering the workforce in the state,” Ellzey said.

The month of September saw 7,746 more South Carolinians employed than there were pre-pandemic in February 2020, Ellzey said, calling the positive trend “a terrific marker of our state’s resurgence in response to the pandemic.”

But he also stressed the need to focus on the continued need for workers, saying there are more than 107,000 open jobs posted to the SC Works Online System. The jobs include more than 15,000 in the healthcare industry, more than 10,000 in retail and more than 6,000 in industries like accommodation and food services, education and manufacturing, he said.

“This is an opportune time for job seekers to take advantage of the abundance of positions available in the workforce across a variety of industries,” Ellzey said. “We strongly encourage anyone struggling to find the right type of job, employer, or position in their local area to contact an SC Works center near them. The professionals in these centers have relationships with regional employers, can assess skills, recommend education and training opportunities, develop a personalized employment plan for job seekers, and offer a variety of professional services.”

The news comes a day after the state posted its lowest weekly first-time unemployment claim total since the pandemic began.

Employment officials said the state received only 1,064 first-time unemployment claims, 250 below the previous week’s total and 201 below the previous low of 1,265 set for the week ending Sept. 4.

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