Report shows hiring slowdown in private sector

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Payrolls processor Automatic Data Processing Inc. issued a report today saying the pace of hiring in private jobs is slowing.

So far in the second quarter, the average monthly gain for private-sector payrolls is 123,000, compared with a pace of more than 200,000 seen for the U.S. economy in the first quarter, according to ADP.

The nation’s private-sector payrolls increased by 133,000 in May, led by small businesses and the service-providing sector, ADP said. The April level was revised to growth of 113,000 from a prior estimate of 119,000.

“During the first two months of the second quarter the average monthly employment gain slipped to 123,000,” ADP president and CEO Carlos A. Rodriguez said in a statement. “We hope to see expanded job creation in the future, fueled by greater performance in the goods-producing and service-providing sectors alike.”

May’s increase was the 28th consecutive advance, ADP reported. Nonetheless, it reflected a slowdown in hiring, said Joel Prakken, chairman of Macroeconomics Advisors LLC, the company that produces the report for ADP.

“The sharpness of the deceleration seems consistent with other incoming data suggesting the economy, weighed down by heightened uncertainty over the European financial crisis and by growing concerns about domestic fiscal policy, slowed early in the year,” Prakken said in a statement.

Today’s estimate will “likely reinforce that the economy is slowing fundamentally for the third summer in a row,” Prakken said.

Separately, first-time unemployment claims rose slightly this week, from 373,000 to 383,000, the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. The seasonally adjusted figure for the week that ended May 26 reflected the fourth week in a row that claims rose marginally.

Labor Department statistics showed that the four-week moving average was 374,500, an increase of 3,750 from the previous week's revised average of 370,750.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.6 percent for the week that ended May 19, unchanged from the prior week's unrevised rate.

The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week that ended May 19 was 3,242,000, a decrease of 36,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 3,278,000. The four-week moving average was 3,263,750, a decrease of 12,000 from the preceding week's revised average of 3,275,750.

Click here for the Department of Labor release.

Click here for the full ADP release.

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