Pennsylvania jobless rate at nearly 2-decade low in January

The Associated Press
Wagman Construction workers, from left, Kenneth Autry, Jr, Brandon Girard and C.J, Fitch move a bar feature while clearing the former White Room at PeoplesBank Park Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. The room will house the 1741 Club starting in the 2019 season.  Bill Kalina photo

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate dropped in January to a nearly two-decade low, as the pool of job-seekers grew and payrolls shrank slightly.

The state Department of Labor and Industry said Friday that Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate ticked down by one-tenth of a percentage point to 4.0 percent in January.

The national rate was 4 percent in January and 3.8 percent in February.

A survey of households found Pennsylvania’s civilian labor force grew by 10,000, as employment rose by 14,000 to a new record close to 6.2 million. Unemployment shrank by 5,000 to 266,000, its lowest level since 2007.

A separate survey of employers showed seasonally adjusted non-farm payrolls shrank by 500 in January. Construction grew the most of any sector, while education and health services shrank the most.

Friday’s figures are preliminary and could change.