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US job growth moderates in March

April 03 2013

The U.S. added 158,000 nonfarm, private-sector jobs in March on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the national employment report released today by Automatic Data Processing Inc. (NASD: ADP). However, the gain was lower than the 237,000 jobs added in February and the gain of 177,000 in January. Both January and February’s numbers were revised.

“Job growth moderated in March. Construction employment gains paused as the rebuilding surge in the wake of Superstorm Sandy ended,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, which produces the report for ADP. “Anticipation of health care reform may also be weighing on employment at companies with close to 50 employees. The job market continues to improve, but in fits and starts.”

The service-providing sector added 151,000 jobs in March, while the goods-producing sector added 7,000 jobs.

Small businesses, those with fewer than 50 workers, added 74,000 jobs in March. Large business, those with 500 or more workers, added 47,000 jobs. Midsize businesses added 37,000 jobs.

The report is based on an anonymous subset of more than 400,000 ADP clients in the U.S. that employ nearly 24 million U.S. workers.

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