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SC Unemployment Rate Down Slightly

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South Carolina’s unemployment rate edged down to 8.6 percent in February from 8.7 percent in January, data from the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (SCDEW) revealed.

Pacing the decline? A whopping 8,000 new government jobs – as well as 3,800 new positions in “education and health services,” a sector of the economy which is driven almost exclusively by government spending. Obviously this isn’t the first time a reduction in the state unemployment rate has been achieved on the backs of the taxpayers – and we suspect it won’t be the last.

“The Palmetto State needs to be growing jobs – not purchasing them with tax dollars,” we wrote last year.

The more things change, huh?

Sadly, none of this is surprising when you consider South Carolina’s “Republican-controlled” General Assembly has grown government by more than $3 billion over the last two years – with S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley approving more than 99 percent of that new spending. A lot of that cash has been spent on “economic development” incentives, which raise the tax burden on existing business – and don’t always pay off.

Nationally, the unemployment rate dipped from 7.9 to 7.7 percent in February – although the nation’s labor participation rate dipped to 65.3 percent, a three-decade low.

FEBRUARY 2013 UNEMPLOYMENT REPORT (.pdf)

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