COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The Palmetto State is starting the year with strong workforce performance that is continuing from 2022.


“South Carolina’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.2% in January from December’s rate of 3.3%, continuing the steady trend of low unemployment from 2022, and average hourly wages are up to a record high of $29.15. What a strong way to start the 2023 year,” said South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) Acting Executive Director William Floyd.

In the South Carolina Employment Situation report released Monday for January 2023, the number of workers in the state increased to 2,298,720. The increase is 4,329 people over the December of 2022 estimate and 10,471 people over the January 2022 estimate.

The number of unemployed people in the data decreased to 76,070. It is a decrease of 1,089 people from the December estimate and 2,352 from the January 2022 estimate.

SCDEW said nationwide the unemployment rate dropped from 3.5% to 3.4%.

Floyd said, “The number of individuals working in South Carolina grew by nearly 4,500 people, and the state’s payroll jobs jumped by nearly 9,000 since December 2022.” Floyd shared that healthcare is one of the sectors seeing significant growth, it added 9,500 jobs over pre-pandemic numbers.

From January 2022 to 2023 the state grew 72,100 seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs. Education and Health services saw the largest growth, adding 15,400 jobs. Trade, Transportation, and Utilities saw the largest decrease, dropping 10,100 jobs during that time period.

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