Hawaii Island unemployment rate drops to 8.9% in December

Hawaii Island’s unemployment rate dropped into the single digits in December, according to data released Monday by the state.

During the final month of a tumultuous 2020 that saw unemployment skyrocket from 2.9% in March to more than 23% in April as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, the Orchid Isle recorded an unemployment rate of 8.9%. That’s down from 10.1% in November and 13.5% in October and September.

Like Hawaii Island, the statewide unemployment rate also dropped into the single digits to 9% in December from 10.4% in November, according to the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. The City and County of Honolulu saw its rate drop to 8% from 9.1%, Maui to 13% from 16.3% and Kauai to 12.3% from 13.9%.

Nationwide, unemployment remained steady at 6.7% in December. A year earlier, just 3.6% of Americans were out of work.

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