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US private sector job growth picks up

[WASHINGTON] US private-sector employment accelerated in September, the sixth straight month of job growth above 200,000, payroll company ADP said on Wednesday.

Private payrolls increased by 213,000 in September from August, topping analysts' consensus estimate of 202,000.

The August reading was revised down by 2,000 to 202,000 job gains.

"It's a positive sign for the economy to see the 200,000-plus trend continue," said Carlos Rodriguez, president and chief executive of ADP.

Economist Mark Zandi of Moody's Analytics, which helps produce the report, said the data was encouraging.

"Job gains remain strong and steady. The pace of job growth has been remarkably similar for the past several years. Especially encouraging most recently is the increasingly broad-based nature of those gains," he said.

The ADP data came ahead of the Labour Department's September jobs report on Friday, a key indicator of the health of the world's largest economy.

Analysts expect the report to show job growth increased to 210,000 from 142,000 in August, and the unemployment rate unchanged at 6.1 per cent.

"We have not changed our slightly below-consensus 195,000 estimate for September, although we also expect at least some upward revision to August," said Jim O'Sullivan, chief US economist at High Frequency Economics.

"The ADP data add to the evidence that trend in employment growth remains solid - at least 200,000 per month. There is no sign of weakening in jobless claims either."