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ADP Says Companies in U.S. Added 215,000 Workers in December

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Companies added 215,000 workers in December, according to a private report based on payrolls.

The increase was higher than projected, data from the Roseland, New Jersey-based ADP Research Institute showed today. The median forecast of 36 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for an advance of 140,000. Estimates ranged from gains of 70,000 to 210,000.

This is the third ADP report derived using a larger sample and new methodology. It represents a break from the way ADP had calculated employment figures dating back to 2001.

The report now draws on data from 406,000 of Automatic Data Processing Inc.’s corporate customers, up from the 344,000 used in the prior method. Those customers employ 23 million workers, or more than 20 percent of all non-government staff, ADP said in a release announcing the changes on Oct. 24.

ADP and Moody’s Analytics Inc. said the new methodology they developed will better align their figures with those from the Labor Department’s monthly payroll report. The methodology uses data from ADP customers, the Labor Department and the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia’s Aruoba-Diebold-Scotti Business Conditions Index. ADP said its numbers should correlate most closely with the final, revised Labor Department figures, rather than those initially released at the beginning of the month.

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