The economy added over 298,000 jobs in the month of February, according to estimates by payroll provider ADP. This is a significant number and is expected to bring the unemployment rate down an additional step to 4.7%, according to Fox Business. Drilling down into the data, we can explore what makes this report truly exciting. The real story with the jobs reports is what specifically pushed the level up to this milestone.
The overall employment number consolidates every industry and company size into one headline-grabbing figure. On both a percentage and absolute basis, the report has not looked this good since 2014. During President Obama’s entire tenure as commander-in-chief, the monthly number only exceeded last month’s number twice. It is truly historic that in his first full month as president, Donald Trump contributed to the economy through his rhetoric and his plans enough to give businesses the confidence to expand hiring by these phenomenal numbers.
More exciting still is the fact that buried in this report, the real driver of gains is revealed to come from the goods-producing sectors of the economy. The overall percent increase was 0.24%, but the goods-producing sector of the economy grew by 0.53% compared to service proving contingent growth of 0.19%. Manufacturing, construction, and mining jobs have all been staples of President Trump’s platform, and it appears that these segments are reacting favorably to his stance toward their industries.
Also noteworthy is the fact that small business employment growth broke a recent trend and surpassed large company hiring growth for the first time in months. Somewhat counterintuitively, nearly twice as many Americans work at companies with fewer than forty-nine employees than work at corporations with over five hundred. President Trump’s focus on loosening regulations, especially on small businesses, will likely continue to drive further expansion in that workforce in the future. Small business is the primary driver of economic growth in our country and will be a key component in achieving improved growth rates.
According to USA Today, economists are already revising their forecasts for the government’s employment report, due out this Friday. The government report dives into much greater detail and will confirm if the trends in the ADP report are here to stay. Coupled with record highs in the stock market, expanding employment bodes extremely well for the U.S. economy.