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unemployment rate

By FITSNews || South Carolina’s unemployment rate fell to 11 percent in May according to data released Friday by the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW).

After peaking at 12.5 percent in January, South Carolina’s rate has dropped in each of the last four months.

May’s employment gains, however, were driven in large part by the addition of new government positions.  The state’s disproportionately-large government sector added nearly 10,000 jobs last month – 8,500 of which were temporary U.S. Census positions.  The remaining job growth was predominantly the result of seasonal gains in the state’s $18.4 billion tourism industry – which is getting a nice shot in the arm as a result of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Is this job growth sustainable?

We’ll see.

Nationally, the unemployment rate fell from 9.9 to 9.7 percent in May – a decline due in large part to people leaving the labor force.

South Carolina’s “underemployment rate” – which includes eligible workers who have grown so depressed with the job market that they have given up searching for work – was measured at 19.7 percent for the first quarter of 2010.  We’ll have to see how far that rate declines in the second quarter …

May Unemployment Report