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ADP: U.S. Job Growth Slowed in April

Job growth in April was in line with economists’ expectations, but slower than in recent months, according to a report from ADP and Moody’s Analytics that showed 177,000 new private sector positions were created. Economists surveyed by Reuters predicted an addition of 175,000 jobs, an increase from last month’s official numbers.

“Job growth slowed in April due to a pullback in construction and retail jobs,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “The softness in construction is continued payback from outsized growth during the mild winter. Brick-and-mortar retailers cut jobs in response to withering competition from online merchants.”

ADP’s March report had indicated a growth of 255,000, revised lower than its originally reported 263,000. Those numbers were significantly higher than the U.S. Labor Department’s numbers; the official March report showed just 98,000 public and private jobs added. The disparity was due largely to weather, according to Zandi, who added that the government used the week of a major snowstorm in the East to calculate its March numbers.

In its jobs report, employment networking site LinkedIn said April was the strongest month for hiring since June 2015. Another good sign: Initial jobless claims, an indicator of layoffs, fell back to nearly four-decade lows after edging up in March.

According to ADP’s report, construction firms cut 2,000 jobs, and trade, transportation and utilities – a category that includes retail – added 5,000 jobs. LinkedIn’s report shows growth in just three sectors – manufacturing; aerospace, automotive and transport; and software.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its official jobs report for April on Friday.