The numbers: Private-sector employment slowed sharply in November, payroll processor ADP said Wednesday. The gain was well below forecasts from economists surveyed by Econoday who expected a gain of 156,000.
What happened: Large businesses, meaning those with about 500 employees or more, added 27,000 jobs. Mid-sized enterprises (50-499 employees) added 29,000 positions, while small employers, or those with one to 49 workers, tacked on 11,000 jobs.
Goods-producing sectors such as manufacturing, construction and mining were a weak spot, with 18,000 jobs lost. Trade and transportation lost 15,000 jobs. Service-providing sectors gained 85,000 jobs
Big picture: Economists use the figures from ADP, the payroll processor for millions of American workers, to get a sense of how many new jobs the U.S. Labor Department employment report is likely to show a few days later.
Prior to the ADP data, economists expected the government report will show 189,000 jobs created in November up from 128,000 in the prior month, but the increase will include workers returning to General
following the end of the four-week strike by the United Auto Workers.
The ADP data is not impacted by the UAW strike.
Overall, economists expect the labor market to cool down along with economic growth. The government’s estimate of job growth has moderated to 167,000 so far this year from 223,000 in 2018.
What ADP said: “The job market is losing its shine,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics.
Market reaction: Stocks
were still set to open higher Wednesday on reports that the U.S. and China are closer to a limited deal than President Donald Trump had indicated in comments to reporters on Tuesday.