Private-sector employers added 281,000 jobs in June

Private-sector employment increased by 281,000 jobs in June, the most since November 2012, according to the ADP National Employment Report released Wednesday. 

The report provides a strong signal that Thursday's scheduled Labor Department jobs reports also could show robust growth for the fifth straight month. 

“It’s a great number,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics.

If the government's report eclipses 200,000 for June, it would not only be the fifth straight month of growth, but would also match a streak of monthly gains last seen during the Dot-com boom in the late 1990s, Zandi said. 

"This job market is actually quite strong by any historical standard," he said. 

Zandi is expecting the government's report to come in around 280,000. 

ADP's May total of jobs added remained unchanged at 179,000.

While there is plenty of slack in the labor market, that should gradually improve before reaching full employment in 2016, Zandi said. 

Meanwhile, job gains were broad based across all industries and company sizes last month. 

The report's best news lies in the strength of hiring among smaller businesses, which continue adding jobs at a strong pace, Zandi said.

Companies with between 1 and 50 employees added 117,000 jobs while those with 50-499 employees hired 115,000.

The service sector, which employs 90 percent of workers, added 230,000 jobs last month, up from 148,000 in May.

Construction added 36,000, a surprise after a softer report in May.

Still, home builders have said they are 1 million construction jobs short from their peak in early 2006, before the housing market crashed. 

Meanwhile, the manufacturing sector hired 12,000 last month.

Another bit of good news was the 11,000 new jobs added in financial activities, which is nearly double last month’s number.