South Carolina Unemployment Claims Continue To Drop

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — First-time claims for unemployment benefits are continuing the drop, South Carolina officials said.

The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce reported a total of fewer than 1,500 first-time claims for the week ending Saturday. That compares to 1,479 initial claims for unemployment benefits that came in the previous week.

The report released this week marks the first time since the week ending June 26 that the total number of first-time claims were below 2,000, WCSC-TV reported. It was also the third week in which the weekly total dropped.

In the most recent numbers, Greenville County had the highest total with 139, while Richland County had the second-highest at 120.

Since the pandemic began, the state has paid out a total of $6.5 billion in state and federal benefits.

Gov. Henry McMaster ordered the agency to end federal pandemic-related unemployment benefits effective June 30, an action aimed at addressing ongoing workforce shortages.