Prior to this morning’s release of the monthly ADP National Employment Report, economists polled by Reuters were predicting the addition of 166,000 jobs to private payrolls in September. The actual number, 154,000 jobs, was lower than expectations and represents the smallest gain in five months.
“Job gains in September eased a bit when compared to the past 12-month average,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and head of the ADP Research Institute. “We also observed softening this month in trade/transportation/utilities, possibly due to a continued tightening U.S. labor market and lackluster consumer spending.”
Service-providing employment as a whole added 151,000 jobs last month, with the largest gains in professional and business services (+45,000 jobs). Trade, transportation, and utilities added 15,000 jobs last month, down from 26,000 jobs in August. Financial activities added 11,000 jobs last month.
Unlike in August, goods-producing employment showed gains last month: +3,000 jobs. However, manufacturing continued to shed jobs, losing 6,000 in September, while construction added 11,000 jobs.
Large businesses added the most jobs last month: 64,000 total, with most gains centered in companies with 1,000 or more employees. Mid-sized businesses with between 50 and 499 employees added 56,000 jobs, and small businesses with fewer than 50 employees added 34,000 jobs.
“With job openings at all-time highs and layoffs near all-time lows, the job market remains in full-swing,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “Job growth has moderated in recent months, but only because the economy is finally returning to full-employment.”
Economists are expecting Friday’s report from the Labor Department to show the addition of 175,000 public and private-sector jobs, and an unemployment rate holding steady at 4.9 percent. The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ report also provides information on long-term unemployment, workforce participation, and wage growth; The PayScale Index, which measures the change in wages for employed U.S. workers, forecasts 1.6 percent year-over-year wage growth for Q3 2016.
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