ADP said that manufacturing employment remained a bright spot in September, with the sector adding 18,000 net new workers for the month. As such, it extended the rather-robust increase seen in August, and year-to-date, manufacturers have hired 158,000 additional employees on net. That translates into an average of just over 17,500 per month, and it represents a significant turnaround from 2016’s more-sluggish pace of hiring. This is another sign that the labor market has tightened in the sector as the overall outlook has improved, and we hope that this bodes well for continued job growth moving forward.
With that said, total nonfarm private employment rose by just 135,000 in September, off from 228,000 in August. These date were likely negatively impacted by devastating hurricanes in the month. Even with some softness in the latest figures, nonfarm private payrolls have increased by nearly 222,000 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 September, the largest employment growth included professional and business services (up 51,000), construction (up 29,000), education and health services (up 29,000), and leisure and hospitality (up 20,000).