Private Sector Hiring Soared to 216,000 This Month

Article main image
Nov 30, 2016

Private sector hiring soared in November as employers added 216,000 new workers, just shy of 100,000 than the 119,000 hired in October.

HR services and payroll processor ADP and its partner, Moody’s Analytics, reported this morning that consumer-driven hiring especially by mid-size and large employers fueled the growth. Hiring was strong in most service sector industries lead by retail and business services. The latter group includes temp agency hiring and professional and technical services.

Surveys of economists in advance of the report showed they were expecting job growth in the 170,000 range. Their estimate may have been influenced by the modest increase in October, which was revised down from an initial 147,000.

The reaction to the election of Donald Trump as president also may have played a part. However, Mark Zandi, Moody’s chief economist, said, “There is little evidence that the uncertainty surrounding the presidential election dampened hiring.” He speculated that “because of the tightening labor market, retailers may be accelerating seasonal hiring to secure an adequate workforce to meet holiday demand, although total expected seasonal hiring may be no higher than last year’s.”

Job growth would have been even higher — the service sector added 228,000 jobs — but for job losses in manufacturing (-10,000) and in mining and natural resources (-4,000). Here’s a summary of the service sector:

  • Trade/transportation/utilities +69,000
  • Information -10,000
  • Financial activities +12,000
  • Professional/business services +68,000
  • Education/health services +43,000
  • Leisure/hospitality +38,000
  • Other services +8,000

ADP’s National Employment Report offers some hints at what the U.S. Department of Labor’s comprehensive employment report will show when it’s released Friday morning. Economists are expecting no change in the 4.9% unemployment report and combined government and private sector job growth of about 175,000.