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Economic Watch: Employers Add Fewer Jobs in April Than March

May 6, 2015

By Evan Lockridge

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Change in non-farm private employment, month-to-month. Graphic: ADP
Change in non-farm private employment, month-to-month. Graphic: ADP
Private sector, non-farm employment increased by less than 200,000 jobs in April for the second straight month, according to a new report released Wednesday.

The ADP National Employment Report shows employment increased by 169,000 jobs from the month before, slightly less than March’s final number of a 175,000 jobs increase and down from a first reported 189,000 gain.

April also marks the fifth straight month job creation has moved lower from the previous month after hitting a level of 284,000 in November 2014, the second highest monthly level seen last year.

“Fallout from the collapse of oil prices and the surging value of the dollar are weighing on job creation,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “Employment in the energy sector and manufacturing is declining. However, this should prove temporary and job growth will reaccelerate this summer.”

Goods-producing employment declined by 1,000 jobs in April, down from 3,000 jobs gained in March. The construction industry added 23,000 jobs, up from 21,000 last month. Meanwhile, manufacturing lost 10,000 jobs in April, after losing 3,000 in March.

Service-providing employment rose by 170,000 jobs in April, down slightly from 172,000 in March. The report shows that professional/business services contributed 34,000 jobs in April, up from March’s 28,000. Expansion in trade/transportation/utilities grew by 44,000, up from March’s 41,000. The 7,000 new jobs added in financial activities is a drop from last month’s 12,000.

Payrolls for businesses with 49 or fewer employees increased by 94,000 jobs in April, down from 105,000 in March. Employment among companies with 50-499 employees increased by 70,000 jobs, up from 64,000 the previous month. Employment gains at large companies, those with 500 or more employees, decreased slightly from March, adding 5,000 jobs in April, down from 6,000. Companies with 500-999 employees added no jobs, after adding just 2,000 in March. Companies with over 1,000 employees added 5,000 jobs, a small improvement from 4,000 the previous month.

The ADP National Employment Report is based on ADP payroll data, representing 411,000 U.S. clients employing nearly 24 million workers the country.

The report comes as federal unemployment/employment numbers are set for release on Friday morning. Labor Department figures last month show 126,000 jobs were added in March, far below the level from the month before, with the unemployment rate remaining at 5.5%.

        ADP National Employment Report: Private Sector Employment Increased by 169,000 Jobs in April

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