US payrolls post biggest gain in six months

U.S. private employers in March hired the most number of workers in six months as more Americans got vaccinated against COVID-19, pushing the economy towards a broader reopening, which is expected to unleash a strong wave of pent-up demand in the coming months, Reuters reports

Though the private payrolls gain shown in the ADP National Employment Report today was slightly below economists’ expectations, the jump in hiring aligned with a recent improvement in labor market conditions. The broad-based increase was led by the leisure and hospitality industry.

The labor market and economy are also being supported by the White House’s massive $1.9 trillion pandemic relief package.

“Companies were hiring again in March and the economy was roaring,” says Chris Low, chief economist at FHN Financial in New York.

Private payrolls surged by 517,000 jobs this month after rising 176,000 in February. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast private payrolls increasing by 550,000 jobs in March.

The leisure and hospitality sector added 169,000 jobs after only 51,000 in February. Construction payrolls rebounded by 32,000 jobs, while hiring at factories rose by 49,000 positions. See the full story.