South Dakota unemployment claims dip below 1,000 for first time since March

Officials say another 7,500 laid-off workers applied for unemployment benefits last week....
Officials say another 7,500 laid-off workers applied for unemployment benefits last week. (Source: MGN)(KMVT)
Published: Jun. 11, 2020 at 9:15 AM CDT
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Initial weekly unemployment claims continued to drop in South Dakota after reaching historic highs amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The state processed 817 initial claims from the week of May 31 through June 6. It is a drop of almost 700 claims from the previous week, and the lowest weekly claims since the effects of the pandemic took hold in mid-March.

Weekly unemployment claims reached as high as 8,000 in the previous three months. Prior to the pandemic, the state usually processed between 200-300 claims per week.

South Dakota Sec. of Labor and Regulation Marcia Hultman said Thursday that over 19,000 job openings are currently listed on the

, which is back to pre-pandemic levels.

“If you’re unsure if you’ll be recalled back to work, now is the perfect opportunity to consider a new career," Hultman said. "We have many education and training opportunities to get you started.”

The latest number of continued claims is 19,629 for the week ending May 23. This indicates the number of unemployed workers eligible for and receiving benefits after their initial claim.

A total of $4.9 million was paid out in state benefits, in addition to $13.1 million paid out in Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, $894,000 in Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and $46,000 in Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits. The Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund balance June 7 was $98.8 million.


applied for unemployment assistance last week.