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Jobs up 189,000 in report, index says services slow

December 05 2007
The U.S. added 189,000 nonfarm, private-sector jobs in November, according to the national employment report released today by Automatic Data Processing Inc. (NYSE: ADP). Service industry jobs increased by 197,000 while the goods-producing segment lost 8,000. The decline in the goods-producing segment was the smallest in the last 12 months, according to the report.

It also found employment is stabilizing in construction and financial activities — two areas hit by the subprime mortgage meltdown. Construction employment fell by 6,000, its smallest decrease since January. Financial activities jobs, which fell by 16,000 from July through October, rose by 10,000 in November.

However, the Institute for Supply Management's nonmanufacturing business activity index released today indicated business and employment activity in the service sector expanded at its slowest pace in eight months. The index level fell to 54.1 in November from 55.8 in October. The employment portion of the index also fell to 50.8 in November from 51.8 the prior month.

"Members' comments in November remain mixed and concerned about the economy," said Anthony Nieves, chair of the ISM's nonmanufacturing business survey committee.

The ISM report is based on information from purchasing and supply executives across the country. The ADP report is based on data from ADP derived from an anonymous subset of roughly 500,000 U.S. business clients.

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