The 42,000 gain followed a revised 19,000 increase the prior month, according to figures today from ADP Employer Services.
While employers are adding staff to meet demand as business investment picks up, it will take time to regain the 8.4 million jobs lost during the recession.
Over the previous six reports, ADP’s initial figures were closest to the Labor Department’s first estimate of private payrolls in February, when they overestimated the drop in jobs by 2,000. The estimate was least accurate in April, when it underestimated the employment gain by 199,000.
Overall payrolls probably fell by about 60,000 in July, reflecting a drop in federal census workers as the decennial population count began to wind down, according to the Bloomberg survey median ahead of the Labor Department’s Aug. 6 report. Private hiring, which excludes government jobs, rose for a seventh consecutive month, economists projected.
The Labor Department figures will also show the jobless rate rose to 9.6 percent in July, from 9.5 percent the previous month, according to the survey median. Unemployment is hovering near a 26-year high of 10.1 percent in October.
Today’s ADP report showed a decrease of 21,000 workers in goods-producing industries including manufacturers and construction companies. Employment in construction fell by 17,000, the smallest decline since November 2007, while factories subtracted 6,000 jobs. The drop in manufacturing jobs was the first since January. Service providers added 63,000 workers.
Companies employing more than 499 workers kept payrolls unchanged in July. Medium-sized businesses, with 50 to 499 employees, and small companies increased payrolls by 21,000 each, ADP said.
The ADP report is based on data from about 500,000 businesses with more than 21 million workers on payrolls. ADP began keeping records in January 2001 and started publishing its numbers in 2006.