Department of Numbers

Charleston-North Charleston, South Carolina Unemployment

The BLS reported that the unemployment rate for Charleston rose 0.4 percentage points in January 2021 to 4.5%. For the same month, the metro unemployment rate was 0.8 percentage points lower than the South Carolina rate. The unemployment rate in Charleston peaked in April 2020 at 12.3% and is now 7.8 percentage points lower. From a post peak low of 3.9% in October 2020, the unemployment rate has now grown by 0.6 percentage points. You can also compare Charleston unemployment with unemployment in other cities.

Unemployment Rate January 2021 Month/Month Year/Year
National 6.3% -0.4 +2.8
South Carolina 5.3% -0.3 +2.7
Charleston 4.5% +0.4 +2.5
Note: Metro level data is now seasonally adjusted.1 All comparisons are made with January 2021 data as February metro level unemployment data has not yet been released.

Unemployment Rate: Charleston, South Carolina, National

Charleston, South Carolina monthly unemployment rate chart

Note: Recessions shown in gray.

Charleston, South Carolina Unemployed

The number of people unemployed in Charleston peaked in May 2020 at 48,275. There are now 30,528 fewer people unemployed in the metropolitan area. From a recent trough of 15,228 in October 2020, the number of unemployed has now grown by 2,519. Charleston employment and jobs data (including jobs lost/gained in Charleston, South Carolina) is also available.

Unemployed Persons January 2021 Month/Month Year/Year
Charleston 17,747 +1,839 +9,586

Number of Unemployed Persons

Charleston, South Carolina Unemployment History

Date National
Unemployment Rate
South Carolina
Unemployment Rate
Charleston
Unemployment Rate
Charleston
Unemployed
March
2021
6.0%
February
2021
6.2% 5.2%
January
2021
6.3% 5.3% 4.5% 17,747
December
2020
6.7% 5.6% 4.1% 15,908
November
2020
6.7% 5.6% 4.0% 15,376
October
2020
6.9% 5.4% 3.9% 15,228
September
2020
7.8% 5.4% 4.8% 18,837
August
2020
8.4% 5.4% 6.3% 25,132
July
2020
10.2% 7.6% 8.7% 35,106
June
2020
11.1% 7.7% 8.6% 34,535
May
2020
13.3% 11.5% 12.3% 48,275
April
2020
14.8% 11.5% 12.3% 47,730

1. Metro area unemployment rates are now seasonally adjusted. The BLS has started publishing smoothed seasonally adjusted metropolitan area data which makes comparisons to state and national data more relevant than the unadjusted numbers.