Here's how unemployment in Sumter County, South Carolina compares

Sumter County's unemployment rate in December was 3.8%—ranked #16 highest out of 46 in the state.

Nationally, unemployment has leveled with pre-COVID rates, measuring between 3.5% and 4% for most of the past two years. Bureau of Labor Statistics data showed a 3.7% unemployment rate in January. Previously, unemployment skyrocketed to 14.7% at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in April 2020, and those rates remained elevated through late 2021.

Though national unemployment has mostly normalized, local economies vary widely. Stacker used Bureau of Labor Statistics data to analyze unemployment in Sumter County over time, and how it stacks up within South Carolina and across the nation.

The unemployment rate in Sumter County is 0.1 percentage points above the national level, and 0.8 percentage points above the state level. It ranks #16 among counties in South Carolina—ranked first by the preliminary December 2023 unemployment rate, then breaking ties by the number of unemployed people. It trails behind Union County, with an unemployment rate of 3.9%, but surpasses Georgetown County (3.6%).

In real terms, it means an estimated 1,622 of Sumter County's approximately 42,929 working residents are out of a job at the moment. That's 63 more than last month and 31 fewer than a year ago. Some economists fret another recession may be on the horizon, which would drive unemployment up with business closures and layoffs.

This story was produced using automation across 3,100 counties, boroughs, and parishes, based on writing and data reporting by Paxtyn Merten.