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Private sector adds 163,000 jobs in August, smallest gain since last October

September 06, 2018

US private-sector employment rose by 163,000 jobs in August from July, the lowest gain since October 2017, according to the ADP National Employment Report.

The total of jobs added in July was also revised down to 217,000 from 218,000; however, it remained the strongest hiring since February.

“Although we saw a small slowdown in job growth the market remains incredibly dynamic,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, VP and co-head of the ADP Research Institute. “Midsized businesses continue to be the engine of growth, adding nearly 70% of all jobs this month, and remain resilient in the current economic climate.”

With more job openings than people looking for them, the labor market is set to remain on the tighter side for some time, according to MarketWatch, and August’s jobs gain fell short of the forecast from economists polled by Econoday, who had expected an increase of 182,000.

The number of goods-producing jobs rose by 24,000 in August on gains of 19,000 manufacturing jobs, and 5,000 construction jobs; however, jobs in resources/mining declined by 1,000 jobs.

Service-providing jobs rose by 139,000 in August, including by 38,000 jobs in professional/business services, 31,000 jobs in education/health services, and 25,000 jobs in leisure/hospitality. No service-job categories posted declines.

Large businesses added 31,000 jobs in August, midsize businesses added 111,000 jobs and small businesses added 21,000 jobs.

“The job market is hot,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “Employers are aggressively competing to hold onto their existing workers and to find new ones. Small businesses are struggling the most in this competition, as they increasingly can’t fill open positions.”

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