Job market starts 2018 with strong showing, ADP says

The job market remained strong in January, according to ADP, as private-sector employment grew by nearly a quarter of a million jobs nationwide.

The Roseland-based payroll and human resources company said in its monthly National Employment Report that the U.S. added 234,000 private-sector jobs for the first month of 2018.

“We’ve kicked off the year with another month of unyielding job gains,” Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and co-head of the ADP Research Institute, said in a prepared statement. “Service providers were firing on all cylinders, posting their strongest gain in more than a year. We also saw robust hiring from midsize and large companies, while job growth in smaller firms slowed slightly.”

Larger businesses fueled the growth, as midsized firms with 50 to 499 workers added 91,000 jobs and large firms with 500-plus workers added 85,000 positions. Small businesses, with less than 50 employees, added 58,000 jobs.

The services sector added 212,000 jobs for the month, while the goods-producing sector added 22,000. Among industries, education/health services added 47,000 jobs, while both professional/business services and leisure/hospitality added 46,000 positions. The information sector was the only prominent loser, dropping 3,000 jobs for the month.

“The job market juggernaut marches on,” Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, said in a statement. “Given the strong January job gain, 2018 is on track to be the eighth consecutive year in which the economy creates over 2 million jobs. If it falls short, it is likely because businesses can’t find workers to fill all the open job positions.”