US private sector employment rose by 204,000 jobs in April from March despite a tight labor market, according to the ADP National Employment Report. March’s gain was revised downward to 228,000 from the initially reported 241,000.
“The labor market continues to maintain a steady pace of strong job growth with little sign of a slowdown,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, VP and co-head of the ADP Research Institute. “However, as the labor pool tightens it will become increasingly difficult for employers to find skilled talent. Job gains in the high-skilled professional and business services industry accounted for more than half of all jobs added this month. The construction industry, which also relies on skilled labor, continued its six-month trend of steady job gains as well.”
April’s jobs gain was above forecasts from economists polled by Econoday, which had expected an average increase of 190,000, according to MarketWatch. This is the sixth straight gain above 200,000.
The number of goods-producing jobs rose by 44,000 in April on gains of 27,000 construction jobs, 10,000 manufacturing jobs and 7,000 natural resources/mining jobs.
Service-providing jobs rose by 160,000 in April, including by 58,000 jobs in professional/business services; 14,000 jobs in trade/transportation/utilities; 35,000 jobs in healthcare/social assistance; and 36,000 jobs in leisure/hospitality.
Jobs in information posted the only decline, falling by 2,000.
Large businesses added 54,000 jobs in April, midsize businesses added 88,000 jobs and small businesses added 62,000 jobs.
“Despite rising trade tensions, more volatile financial markets and poor weather, businesses are adding a robust more than 200,000 jobs per month,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “At this pace, unemployment will soon be in the threes, which is rarified and risky territory, as the economy threatens to overheat.”
Separately, The Conference Board reported US online job ads fell in April by 69,000 to approximately 4.8 million after increasing in March.
And in other employment news, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that the Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin metropolitan area in Tennessee, and the San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward and San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara areas in California had the lowest unemployment rates in March at 2.7% each. The highest jobless rate among large metropolitan areas in March was posted by the Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls area in New York, at 5.8%.