First-time Unemployment Claims Drop in State and Nation

Initial applications for jobless benefits dropped in both South Carolina and throughout the nation last week, according to data released today by the Department of Labor.

Nationwide, seasonally adjusted first-time claims for state Unemployment Insurance benefits decreased by 4,000 to 364,000 from the week before. This represented the lowest level since April 2008.

Initial claims data is often used as an indicator for unemployment, and some experts say the drop points to signs of an improving economy.

In South Carolina, initial claims for the week ending Dec. 17 dropped by 2,427 due to fewer layoffs in the manufacturing and textile industries, according to the Department of Labor.