ADP said that manufacturing employment remained a bright spot in October, with the sector adding 22,000 net new workers for the month. As such, manufacturers continue to hire at a rather robust rate as firms react to increased activity and an improved economic outlook.
The sector has hired an average of 17,445 per month year-to-date—a significant turnaround from 2016’s more-sluggish pace. Overall, we continue to see signs that the labor market for manufacturing firms has tightened considerably, with business leaders citing notable challenges in attracting talent. We expect continued strength in job growth moving forward.
Meanwhile, total nonfarm private employment rebounded in October, up from 110,000 in September to 235,000 in this release. This suggests that the labor market has started to recover from the devastating hurricanes, which weakened the September reading. Nonfarm private payrolls have increased by 221,648 per month on average year-to-date, which was notably higher than the 179,327 workers added each month in the second half of 2016. In October, the largest employment growth included professional and business services (up 109,000), construction (up 62,000), leisure and hospitality (up 45,000) and education and health services (up 39,000). Small and medium-sized firms (e.g., those with less than 500 employees) accounted for 61.7 percent of the net job creation in October.