Unemployment in South Carolina holds steady at 6.6 percent for month of January



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COLUMBIA, South Carolina — South Carolina's unemployment held steady at 6.6 percent during the month of January, state officials announced Tuesday.

The state Department of Employment said in a news release that South Carolina's jobless rate was 6.6 percent. That's unchanged from the revised rate for the month of December.

Nationally, unemployment in January was 5.7 percent.

State officials also said that the number of people working in South Carolina hit a record high of 2,080,031 in the first month of this year. That's up nearly 11,000 from December.

Leisure and hospitality jobs were up by 3,100 in January, while trade, transportation and utilities jobs grew by 1,600. The manufacturing sector lost 1,700 jobs, and government positions were down by 1,400.

Overall, nonfarm jobs were up by 2,500 from December to January and have grown 49,500 in the past year, according to state officials. Since January 2014, the biggest gains came in trade, transportation and utilities, at 12,800 jobs, and professional and business services, which grew by 11,000 jobs.

Unemployment went up in January in all but two of South Carolina's 46 counties in January, Marion and York counties. Allendale County was highest, at 13.2 percent. Lexington County had the state's lowest jobless rate, at 5.5 percent.


Kinnard can be reached at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP

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