COLUMBIA, SC (WMBF/WIS) - South Carolina's new Department of Employment and Workforce says the state's unemployment rate has dropped for the third straight month to 11.6 percent.
The state added 13,000 non-farm jobs in April and posted mostly seasonal gains in retail trade, leisure and hospitality, and professional and business services. Manufacturing jobs also increased to 500.
The construction industry declined, losing 2,800 jobs and so did the educational and health services industry with a loss of 600 jobs.
April's numbers show a "significant drop," according to the department in comparison to March's unemployment rate of 12.2 percent. The national jobless rate increased to 9.9 percent as more people entered the workforce to look for jobs.
Friday's release is the first since Gov. Mark Sanford appointed a retired Air Force general as caretaker to run South Carolina's new Workforce Department. Last month, Sanford tapped retired Brig. Gen. John L. Finan to lead the new Cabinet agency until March 2011.
UNEMPLOYMENT RATES RANKED BY COUNTY