Local Unemployment Rates on rise

New figures released by the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce show local unemployment rates on the rise while the state rate remained unchanged.  In the tri-county area of Upstate South Carolina, Oconee County saw its jobless rate climb from 7.4% in April to 8.3% in May.  Anderson County’s unemployment rate went from 6.8% in April to 7.3% in May.  The jobless figure in Pickens County was similar, from 6.2% in April to 6.6% in May.  The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady at 8% in May. The number of unemployed fell by 1,773, while the number of people employed rose by 1,497, making May the 11th consecutive month that employment has increased in the state. Nationally, the unemployment rate increased slightly from 7.5% to 7.6% prompted by people re-entering the workforce. This month is the closest South Carolina’s rate has been to the national rate since March 2008, when both rates were below 6%.