WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. businesses boosted hiring in April, according to a private survey, a positive sign the economy may improve after a sluggish start this year.
Payroll processer ADP says private employers added 220,000 jobs in April, the most since November and up from 209,000 in March.
The report says most of the hiring occurred in service industries such as retail, transportation, and professional services. Construction firms added 19,000 jobs, a healthy gain. Manufacturing added just 1,000.
The figures suggest that the government's jobs report, to be released Friday, could show a healthy gain. Economists forecast that report will show employers added 215,000 jobs in April. That would be the most in five months.
The ADP numbers cover only private businesses and often diverge from the government's more comprehensive report.