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First Cut: February ADP National Employment Report puts private payrolls up a solid 183,000

The ADP National Employment Report for February put private payrolls up 183,000 after up 300,000 in January (previously 213,000). The data incorporates annual revisions from the Labor Department. The February level was essentially the same as market expectations and will not prompt any alteration in forecasts for the February Employment Situation when it is released at 8:30 ET on Friday, March 8. The present median forecast for private payrolls is 178,000, not far off the ADP headline.

Employment at service providers was up 139,000 and accounted for about 3/4 of all hiring.  Payroll gains were strong for professional and business services (49,000) and healthcare (39,000).

Employment among goods producers was robust for construction (25,000) and remaining sturdy for manufacturing (17,000).

With moderation in economic growth will come moderation in new hiring, but a deceleration in adding to payrolls should not necessarily be interpreted as a sign that the present long expansion is done and that the labor market will deteriorate in the near term. For the moment, it appears that the underlying trend is still sufficient to absorb new workers in the labor market and lure out some marginalized workers.


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