Private Sector Hiring Slows, Jobless Claims Stay Low

What Thursday’s Economic Reports Tell Us

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Hiring in the U.S. private sector slowed significantly in May, and weekly jobless claims were lower than expected, reports showed Thursday.

Here’s a quick look at the most significant economic indicators of the day and what they tell us.

ADP National Employment Report 

  • The U. S. private sector added just 128,000 jobs in May, according to payroll processing company ADP. That’s the smallest number of jobs added since the mass layoffs of April 2020, and far fewer than the nearly 300,000 economists were expecting. 
  • Service providers such as education and health care workers saw the most growth in May’s figures, which were down nearly 37% from last month’s revised 202,000. Medium and large employers gained 97,000 and 122,000 jobs, respectively, but companies with fewer than 50 employees lost 91,000 as they struggled to compete with larger firms for workers.
  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics will release its numbers for May job growth, including government jobs, on Friday. Economists are expecting that report to show an addition of 328,000 jobs. 

Initial Jobless Claims

  • Last week 200,000 people filed for new unemployment claims, the Labor Department reported. That’s 11,000 fewer than the previous week’s revised figure, and 10,000 less than economists expected.
  • New jobless claims have remained at low pre-pandemic levels since January, a trend that economists expect will continue.

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  1. ADP. “ADP National Employment Report.”

  2. Department of Labor. “News Release.”

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