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      SC unemployment rate down for 9th month

      The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce says the state's unemployment rate went down for the ninth straight month from 8.9 percent in March to 8.8 percent in April.

      "In the last year, approximately 28,290 people found work, signaling ongoing improvement. The labor force as a whole has declined slightly over the year (-5,598), as has the level of unemployed persons, falling 33,887 since April 2011," said the DEW in a news release Friday.

      The Palmetto State's rate is still above the national average in April, which is 8.1 percent.

      The DEW says the field of Leisure and Hospitality employment showed growth for the third month in a row, adding 7,300 jobs.

      The two counties with the highest unemployment are in our area.

      Marion County is at 16.8 percent and Marlboro County is at 15.7 percent.

      Dillon County has 13.1 percent unemployment.

      Horry and Florence counties were tied in April at 9.5 percent.

      Darlington and Georgetown counties were tied at 9.1 percent.

      Lexington County had the lowest unemployment in the state again at 6.6 percent.