The latest South Dakota unemployment numbers are split. Initial unemployment claims dropped last week, while continued claims rose, Dakota News Now reports.

According to the South Dakota Department of Labor, the first time claims for the week ending August 29 fell 208 for a total of 594. While this number is still higher than the state's typical weekly average of 200 to 300, it represents one of the lowest totals since the pandemic began in March.

Continued unemployment claims rose by 1,700 for a total of 10,807. This is the number of unemployed workers who are receiving benefits after their initial claim.

State labor officials say that unemployment numbers are 'likely to continue to fluctuate' as long as the pandemic continues to have an effect on the overall economy.

South Dakota paid out $1.5 million in state benefits.

On a national front, initial unemployment claims dropped to 881,000, the lowest figure since pandemic shutdowns of 'non-essential' businesses began.  The record high before the pandemic was 695,000 set in 1982. Over 59 million workers have filed an initial claim since mid-March.

Continued claims sharply fell by 1.24 million to 13.2 million.

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