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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

ADP Report September 2012: 162,000 Private Sector Jobs Added


October Jobs to be released Friday, November 2nd

ADP Numbers for September 2012:  

Private sector jobs increased by a solid 162,000 jobs, however, this was less than the gain for August (which was initially reported at 201,000).  August and July jobs numbers were revised slightly downwards. We will have to wait until Friday, October 5, to see if the ADP numbers are in line with the BLS jobs numbers that will be released that morning.


ADP reported 144,000 more jobs in the private, service-providing sector and 18,000 more jobs in the private, goods producing sector.  4,000 more jobs were reported in manufacturing, 10,000 more jobs were reported in construction (the biggest increase since March), and 7,000 more jobs were reported in financial services, which represents 14 months of continuous growth in that sector.  


ADP numbers also show 1,537,000 new private sector jobs this year, 2012.


The report showed downward revisions for August numbers in total private jobs numbers (revised down by by 29,000 jobs), goods producing jobs (revised down by 6,000 jobs), and service producing jobs (revised down by 23,000).


BLS Jobs Numbers and Unemployment Summary to be Released Friday, October 5th.  Check back then!


The monthly jobs report from the private payroll processor ADP is usually seen as a bellweather of the national jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that  is released a couple of days later.  This morning's ADP report seems to indicate reasonable and increasing private-sector job growth.

From the ADP Report:

Employment in the U.S. nonfarm private business sector increased by 162,000 from August to September, on a seasonally adjusted basis.  The estimated gains in previous months were revised lower: The July increase was reduced by 17,000 to an increase of 156,000, while the August increase was reduced by 12,000 to an increase of 189,000.
Employment in the private, service-providing sector expanded 144,000 in September, down from 175,000 in August.  Employment in the private, goods-producing sector added 18,000 jobs in September.  Manufacturing employment rose 4,000, while construction employment rose 10,000the strongest since March when mild winter weather was boosting construction activity. The financial services sector added 7,000 jobs in September, marking the fourteenth consecutive monthly gain.

Small and medium service-providing companies add largest number of jobs.

The ADP report also shows that small (1-49 employees) and medium sized companies (50-499 employees) in the service-providing sector (vs. the manufacturing "goods-providing" sector) added the most jobs last month.  These segments were responsible for 128,000 of the 144,000 total added jobs in the service-providing sector.  This has been the trend for many months now.  Since April 2012, small and medium service-providing firms have added 678,000 jobs, and large service-providing firms (500+ employees) have added only about 74,000 jobs.

Hiring by large goods-producing firms is paltry.


Small and medium goods-producing firms have continued to grow throughout 2012, adding 55,000 jobs since April, but large goods-producing firms (with more than 500 employees) have been stagnant in 2012.  Only 1,000 new jobs were added by these large goods-producing firms, and only 4,000 new jobs had been added by this group of firms since April.  The number of people working for large goods-producing firms is just about the same as it has been since April.  (3,522,000 people worked for large goods-producing firms in April vs. 3,526,000 people working in such firms now.)

Small and medium goods-producing firms added an estimated 17,000 jobs last month (basically the same as the 16,000 the month before).  As mentioned above, those small and medium goods-producing firms have added 55,000 jobs in total since April 2012.

Continued turnaround in Construction and Manufacturing; Financial Services continues to add jobs.


This report shows a continued turnaround in jobs in both Construction and in Manufacturing.  Construction rose for the fourth month in a row this summer, by an impressive 10,000 jobs in September, after declining for two months in the spring.

Manufacturing fell off in April and May, but has now added jobs for four months in a row.  The manufacturing sector added 4,000 jobs in September and 19,000 new jobs since May.

Financial services added 
7,000 jobs last month.  This sector has now added jobs for 14 consecutive months.

What is the ADP report?  How does it compare with the monthly BLS report? 
When attempting to make any sense of this ADP report, here are a few things to consider:
  • This is an estimate based on ADP's survey of its payroll processing private-sector clients.  Over time, it moves in parallel with the government's BLS Establishment numbers, but it is not perfectly in synch with the government's numbers.  Also, the government reports may be more accurate in tallying small startups.  The ADP total numbers usually run about 300,000 to 600,000 lower than the BLS private jobs numbers in total jobsnot in increases or decreases of jobs.
  • Though the ADP report runs parallel to the BLS numbers over time, they can be off in any one or two month period.  ADP numbers have shown more growth in the private sector economy than the BLS numbers for at least the past six individual months.  
  • From August 2011 to August 2012, ADP has shown an increase of about 2,180,000 private sector jobs, whereas the BLS has shown an increase of only about 1,974,000 private sector jobs over that same time.
  • The BLS recently released a benchmark revision which updates their monthly estimates with "real" data from unemployment tax records.  (This data is not available until about 6 months after a given month.)  It showed that the BLS had underestimated private sector jobs by 453,000 from March 2011 to March 2012.  BLS previously estimated private sector job growth of 2,146,000 for that 12 month period, while ADP estimated job growth of 2,183,000 for that same period.  ADP revised its monthly figures in February and added 245,000 private sector jobs at that time.  Both ADP and the BLS continue to revise their numbers for months and even years after a given month as more complete data becomes available.  These benchmark revisions in the hundreds of thousands seem high, but 400,000 jobs is only about half a percent of the total number of private sector jobs out there.   
  • To reiterate what I've been mentioning in these ADP summaries:  One of the things that seems to be more prevalent recently is that the stock market moves up or down NOT necessarily in concert with any reports of job growth (we haven't had any decline in total private jobs in over two years.), but in concert with reports of job growth compared to what the pundits THINK the reports should say.  This ADP report, if supported by BLS data, was considered reasonable, and stock futures were positive after it was released.    
  • The ADP report, which is a private report, can provide a check on the  government Bureau of Labor Statistics report.  Some claim that the BLS numbers may not be accurate because they are published by the government; therefore, the report is somehow slanted or the government is somehow "cooking the books".  However, the private ADP reports from March through August showed 761,000 private jobs added in those five months, whereas the government BLS showed only 529,000 jobs added in that same time frame. 

Small and medium service-providing companies add largest number of jobs.

The ADP report also shows that small (1-49 employees) and medium sized companies (50-499 employees) in the service-providing sector (vs. the manufacturing "goods-providing" sector) added the most jobs last month.  These segments were responsible for 128,000 of the 144,000 total added jobs in the service-providing sector.  This has been the trend for many months now.  Since April 2012, small and medium service-providing firms have added 678,000 jobs, and large service-providing firms (500+ employees) have added only about 74,000 jobs.

Hiring by large goods-producing firms is paltry.


Small and medium goods-producing firms have continued to grow throughout 2012, adding 55,000 jobs since April, but large goods-producing firms (with more than 500 employees) have been stagnant in 2012.  Only 1,000 new jobs were added by these large goods-producing firms, and only 4,000 new jobs had been added by this group of firms since April.  The number of people working for large goods-producing firms is just about the same as it has been since April.  (3,522,000 people worked for large goods-producing firms in April vs. 3,526,000 people working in such firms now.)

Small and medium goods-producing firms added an estimated 17,000 jobs last month (basically the same as the 16,000 the month before).  As mentioned above, those small and medium goods-producing firms have added 55,000 jobs in total since April 2012.

Continued turnaround in Construction and Manufacturing; Financial Services continues to add jobs.


This report shows a continued turnaround in jobs in both Construction and in Manufacturing.  Construction rose for the fourth month in a row this summer, by an impressive 10,000 jobs in September, after declining for two months in the spring.

Manufacturing fell off in April and May, but has now added jobs for four months in a row.  The manufacturing sector added 4,000 jobs in September and 19,000 new jobs since May.

Financial services added 
7,000 jobs last month.  This sector has now added jobs for 14 consecutive months.

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