Explaining Southern California's economy

Encouraging data coming out ahead of Friday's jobs report

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A job seeker looks over event materials as she waits to enter the San Francisco Hirevent job fair at the Hotel Whitcomb in San Francisco. Two encouraging if not exactly thrilling reports on hiring and layoffs arrived this morning, ahead on Friday's official government jobs numbers.

Two relatively optimistic reports have come out this morning, ahead of tomorrow's official government jobs report from the Labor Department. The ADP National Employment Report shows that the economy added 176,000 new private-sector jobs in June — 93,000 by small businesses.

You have to be careful with the ADP report, however. It can deviate significantly from the government's numbers. Last month, ADP said the economy had added 133,000 jobs in May, while the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) concluded that we added only 69,000.

Bloomberg surveys economist each month to develop a consensus on the jobs situation and this time around, the number is around 100,000 new jobs — lower than ADP by a good margin and well below the 150,000 that was anticipated for May.

Finally, Challenger, Gray & Christmas, a human-resources consulting firm that tracks hiring and layoffs, announced that employers are slowing their pace of layoffs to a 13-month low of 37,551.