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Private sector added only 139,000 jobs In February

NEW YORK - U.S. private employers added 139,000 jobs in February, shy of economists' expectations, and gains in the previous month were revised lower, a report by a payrolls processor showed on Wednesday.

Economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast the ADP National Employment Report would show a gain of 160,000 jobs.

Private payrolls for January were revised down to a gain of 127,000 from the previously reported 175,000.

The report is jointly developed with Moody's Analytics.

The monthly jobs report from the Department of Labor is due out Friday. Economist Paul Ashworth at Capital Economics expects that report to reflect only 125,000 in gains for the month of February.

"Our 125,000 estimate reflects our belief that the unusually bad weather hit employment hard in February," he said. "A large snow storm hit the Eastern Seaboard on the 12th and 13th, causing gridlock in cities in the Southeast and closing down the Federal government in Washington. Accordingly, we would expect to see a big bounce back in employment in March and/or April."

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