Greenville County’s unemployment rate also dropped to 10.3 percent in March from 10.9 percent the previous month. Greenville and Pickens County, also at 10.3 percent, had the lowest jobless rate in the 10-county Upstate. The highest was Union County at 19.2 percent.
“We are encouraged by the improvement we have seen over the past couple of months; however, the state’s economy remains fragile,” said Samuel R. Foster, interim executive director of the state Employment Security Commission. “We have a ways to go before we can feel confident that unemployment is on a path to sustained recovery.”
Statewide, Lexington County reported the lowest jobless rate at 8.5 percent and Marion County the highest at 20.7 percent.
The commission estimated that the number of unemployed workers in the state decreased by 5,687 to 264,452. Also, the state’s labor force dropped slightly, down 980 to 2,173,260 in March.
Every major industry sector but manufacturing saw an increase in jobs as the non-farm job count increased by 15,900 positions. Manufacturing dropped 200 jobs while construction jobs were up 900 in March. Leisure and hospitality added 4,500 jobs, followed by retail trade with 3,700 new positions and professional and business services with 3,200 new jobs.