First Look At February: ADP Says 117K New Nonfarm Private Jobs

The economic mover and shaker this week is Friday's employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This monthly report contains a wealth of data for economists, the most publicized being the month-over-month change in Total Nonfarm Employment (the PAYEMS series in the FRED repository).

Today we have the ADP February estimate of 117K nonfarm private employment jobs gained, a decrease over the ADP revised January figure of 195K.

The 117K estimate came in below the consensus of 177K for the ADP number.

The forecast for the forthcoming BLS report is for 194K private nonfarm jobs gained and the unemployment rate to remain at 6.3%. Their forecast for the February new full nonfarm jobs is (the PAYEMS number) 180K.

Here is an excerpt from today's ADP report press release:

“The labor market continues to post a sluggish recovery across the board,” said Nela Richardson, chief economist, ADP. “We’re seeing large-sized companies increasingly feeling the effects of COVID-19, while job growth in the goods producing sector pauses. With the pandemic still in the driver’s seat, the service sector remains well below its pre-pandemic levels; however, this sector is one that will likely benefit the most over time with reopenings and increased consumer confidence.

Here is a visualization of the two series over the previous twelve months.

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