- Associated Press - Friday, December 16, 2016

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina’s jobless rate has fallen for the seventh consecutive month, reaching a nearly 16-year low.

The Department of Employment and Workforce said Friday that South Carolina’s unemployment rate was 4.4 percent in November, down from 4.7 percent in October. The rate hasn’t been that low since early 2001.

The agency says the number of South Carolinians working rose to a new high of 2.2 million. The number of unemployed people looking for work declined to about 102,000.

The U.S. Labor Department again ranks South Carolina as having the 22nd lowest jobless rate in the country.

The national jobless rate in November dropped to 4.6 percent. New Hampshire and South Dakota again posted the lowest rate of 2.7 percent, while Alaska again had the highest at 6.8 percent.

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