WASHINGTON - A private survey shows that businesses added jobs at a modest pace in January, a sign that hiring may have rebounded after a disappointing figure in December.
Payroll processor ADP says companies added 175,000 jobs last month. That's down from 227,000 in December, which was
revised lower. But it was much better than the government's official figure of just 74,000 new jobs in December.
The ADP numbers cover only private
businesses and often diverge from the government's more comprehensive report.
In December its figure came in much higher than the official count.
The report comes amid rising fears of
a slowdown in the U.S. and global economies. Those fears have caused sharp
falls in stock markets worldwide. Turmoil in developing countries and signs of
slower growth in the U.S. have also raised uncertainty about the Federal
Reserve's next steps.
Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's
Analytics, which compiles ADP's report, said that cold weather "continued
to weigh on the job numbers."
Many economists said bad weather was
partly to blame for the sharp fall-off in December hiring. Job gains had
averaged 214,000 a month from August through November, nearly three times
Construction added 25,000 jobs in January, the ADP survey found, slightly below December's total. Manufacturing cut 12,000 jobs.