South Carolina saw a 1,600% increase in new unemployment claims last week, with initial claims ballooning to 31,054 from the prior week's 1,996, the state Department of Employment and Workforce announced Thursday.
Those initial claims came mostly from the hospitality industry, which was rocked by layoffs last week after travel plummeted and Gov. Henry McMaster ordered restaurant dining rooms shuttered in response to the growing number of COVID-19 cases in the state.
Greenwood County had 329 new claims, accounting for about 1% of the county's workforce.
Neighboring counties also saw jumps in new claims:
Laurens — 239
Newberry — 106
Abbeville — 83
Edgefield — 55
Saluda — 21
McCormick — 15