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Now hiring sign.jpg

FILE- In this Sept. 27, 2018, file photo a bilingual help wanted sign for Auto Zone, a retailer of aftermarket automotive parts and accessories, is posted outside the store in Canton, Miss. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)

(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.