South Carolina's unemployment rate inched up to 10.7 percent in December from 10.6 percent the month before, according to data released Tuesday by the state's Department of Employment and Workforce.
Aiken County mirrored that trend, with the unemployment rate rising 0.1 percent to 8.5 percent in December as 52 more people reported being unemployed and more people also re-entered the labor market than in November.
The county's unemployment rate was tied for second lowest in the state.
Edgefield County's rate remained unchanged at 9.5 percent in December.
Although the state's unemployment rate rose, total employment rose about 4,400, according to the Department of Employment and Workforce. Employment has risen for four consecutive months, according to a news release.
Industries that gained jobs in 2010 were professional and business services, manufacturing, financial activities, education and health services and wholesale trade.
"As the state's employment level gradually trends upward, we are also seeing more people return to the labor force," said John Finan, the department's executive director, in a statement. "While this is encouraging, we remain cautiously optimistic about the state's continuing recovery."