The U.S. economy added 243,000 jobs in January, bringing the unemployment rate to its lowest level in three years.
Feb. 3, 2012 Alonzo Whitten, 55, of the District, takes inventory of the stock at the soon-to-open Annie's Ace Hardware store in the Petworth area of Washington, D.C. The store's hiring of new employees from the neighborhood is part of the 243,000 new jobs added in the United States this past January as the unemployment rate dropped to 8.3 percent. Whitten, a certified plumber, was hired two to three weeks ago at Ace to head the store's plumbing department. Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post Buy Photo