Inscriptions at the Job News USA Career Fair in Louisville, Kentucky, June 23, 2021.
Luke Charette Bloomberg | Getty Images
Private job creation rose faster than expected in February, according to a census released Wednesday by payroll firm ADP.
The companies added 475,000 positions for the month, better than the Dow Jones estimate of 400,000.
ADP also dramatically revised its January issue, from an initial loss of 301,000 to a profit of 509,000. This upward revision of 810,000 led to a closer alignment with the Ministry of Labor for the month’s profit of 467,000.
Wednesday’s report notes that ADP conducted annual audits of its February census to bring it into line with census data and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In other months, corrections have been observed over the past year, but none have been as large as in January 2022.
“Employment remains stable, but limited by reduced labor supply after the pandemic,” said ADP chief economist Nela Richardson. “Last month, large companies showed that they are well prepared to compete with higher wages and compensation proposals, and published the strongest record since the first days of the pandemic recovery.
Companies with 500 or more employees were responsible for almost all hires during the month, adding 552,000 positions. Companies with less than 50 employees reported a loss of 96,000, while medium-sized companies added only 18,000.
By sector, recreation and hospitality recorded the largest gains with an increase of 170,000. Trade, transport and utilities contributed 98,000, while professional and business services increased by 72,000.
On the goods side, production increased by 30,000 and construction added 26,000.
Although the two may differ significantly, the ADP number serves as a precursor to the more widely discussed BLS non-agricultural wage report coming out on Friday. Economists polled by Dow Jones expect the economy to create 440,000 jobs a month.