North Carolina's unemployment rate has dropped to its lowest level in four years, and South Carolina's unemployment rate has declined to the lowest point in five years. That's according to figures released Friday for the month of April.
North Carolina's rate for was 8.9 percent, while South Carolina's was 8 percent. The private sector continues leading job growth. The industry that added the most jobs last month in both states was Leisure and Hospitality Services. That industry includes jobs in restaurants, hotels and the arts, and it often boosts hiring before the summer tourist season.
But the declines in both states' unemployment rates from the month before were also partly due to people dropping out of the labor force, meaning more people retired or gave up on their job searches. That was a bigger factor in North Carolina than South Carolina. Both states unemployment rates remain above the national average of 7.5 percent.