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New Federal Data Shows Dynamic South Carolina Labor Market

Tue, 07/05/2022

New Federal Data Shows Dynamic South Carolina Labor Market

Job hires, openings, and quits persist at near record highs.

Columbia, S.C. – Increased labor market churn and the availability of workers needed to allow our state’s businesses to grow continue to be topics of great interest. The Labor Market Information (LMI) Division at the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) is closely monitoring emerging data and analysis on this topic. On Wednesday, June 29, 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released new Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) state-level data for April 2022 and revisions to previously released data for 2021 and 2022.

“Much conversation has focused on the rate of people quitting their jobs,” said S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce LMI Director Dr. Bryan Grady. “In April, an estimated 86,000 South Carolinians did so, according to preliminary seasonally adjusted data. This ties a record set last month, as the figure for March was revised down to the same level. However, firms brought on board 113,000 workers that same month, the eleventh month straight featuring over 100,000 new hires. Going off of JOLTs data, there are 175,000 job openings in the state according to the monthly survey of businesses conducted by the BLS – not to be confused with the estimated 107,000 job openings available in our SC Works Online Services (SCWOS) system, which are directly posted through our agency or recirculated off of job boards such as Monster.com, Indeed.com, and the National Labor Exchange at www.usnlx.com. The 175,000 job openings are in line with the elevated numbers seen over the past year. This is surely incentivizing workers to see if there are other job options that are better for them and their families.” 

“While the global economic environment poses challenges for South Carolina, our state’s job market remains incredibly robust,” states S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce Executive Director Dan Ellzey. “This is evident by the state’s unemployment rate of 3.3 percent and our increasing labor force participation rate. We are working hard to make sure South Carolina businesses are able to hire the workers they need to compete.”

For more information, please see the below JOLTS data table. Interested parties can contact communications@dew.sc.gov with any press inquiries or interview requests for DEW’s LMI Division. Our agency has also released the latest issue of Trends on Thursday, June 30, 2022, which provides a myriad of data, articles, and resources on the state’s labor market.


Table: Job Hires, Openings, and Quits, South Carolina, 2020-2022

Month

Hires

Openings

Quits

Count

Rate

Count

Rate

Count

Rate

Jan. 2020

105

4.8

109

4.7

75

3.4

Feb. 2020

107

4.9

104

4.5

57

2.6

Mar. 2020

97

4.4

103

4.5

38

1.7

Apr. 2020

66

3.5

82

4.2

37

2.0

May 2020

134

6.8

95

4.6

43

2.2

Jun. 2020

120

5.9

108

5.1

51

2.5

Jul. 2020

94

4.6

106

5.0

52

2.6

Aug. 2020

106

5.1

115

5.3

60

2.9

Sep. 2020

102

4.9

123

5.6

63

3.0

Oct. 2020

103

4.9

124

5.6

66

3.1

Nov. 2020

105

5.0

124

5.6

68

3.2

Dec. 2020

98

4.6

132

5.9

54

2.5

Jan. 2021

90

4.2

138

6.1

62

2.9

Feb. 2021

103

4.8

146

6.4

60

2.8

Mar. 2021

94

4.4

147

6.4

64

3.0

Apr. 2021

87

4.1

150

6.6

82

3.8

May 2021

99

4.6

172

7.4

68

3.2

Jun. 2021

106

5.0

147

6.4

68

3.2

Jul. 2021

108

5.0

178

7.6

70

3.3

Aug. 2021

111

5.1

183

7.8

64

3.0

Sep. 2021

108

5.0

177

7.6

67

3.1

Oct. 2021

115

5.3

185

7.9

77

3.6

Nov. 2021

131

6.0

179

7.6

78

3.6

Dec. 2021

115

5.3

205

8.6

78

3.6

Jan. 2022

114

5.2

181

7.7

80

3.7

Feb. 2022

120

5.5

184

7.7

80

3.6

Mar. 2022

120

5.5

209

8.7

86

3.9

Apr. 2022

113

5.1

175

7.4

86

3.9

Source: Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Notes: April 2022 data are preliminary. Counts are in thousands; rates are percentages.