South Carolina’s overall labor force grew in March, as the number of people listed as both “employed” and “unemployed” increased. As a result, the state’s unemployment rate remained at 4.4 percent last month, according to the state Department of Employment and Workforce.
The agency said nearly 2.223 million people were employed in March, a new high in the state’s history. The number of people holding jobs increased by more than 9,500 since February. However, the number of people listed as unemployed ticked up by slightly more than 200, which kept the overall rate unchanged for a second consecutive month.
“The fact that nearly everyone entering the labor force in March found work is truly a testament to how robust the economy is in South Carolina,” SCDEW Director Cheryl Stanton said in a statement. “Businesses are deciding South Carolina is where they want to grow and expand and, therefore, are in need of our number one resource – our people. And in turn, more and more people are feeling confident and optimistic about the opportunities available to them as they return to the workforce.”
Nationally, March’s unemployment rate fell from 4.7 percent in February to 4.5 percent.
The largest South Carolina increases were reported in the Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (2,200 net new jobs) and Education and Health Services (1,400 additional jobs) sectors. Recording fewer jobs in February were Professional and Business Services (1,700 fewer and Financial Activities (1,100 net loss).
Charleston County had the lowest unemployment rate at 3.3 percent in March, according to the data. Marion County was the highest at 7.3 percent.