US companies weathering the global storm and keep hiring

Julian Harris
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AMERICAN companies kept hiring in August despite global market turbulence over the last couple of weeks, according to a survey released yesterday.

Strong labour market figures could support the case for a US rate hike this year – or even this month – although projections for monetary tightening have been pushed back due to worries over China and the strength of the world economy.

The ADP report, published ahead of tomorrow’s official and more closely-watched non-farm payrolls figures, said that private sector companies added 190,000 people to payrolls last month. The figure disappointed analysts, who had expected more than 200,000 new roles, but was nonetheless higher than July’s score of 177,000.

Meanwhile the Federal Reserve’s latest Beige Book, released last night, said that the economy continued to grow throughout “most” of the country during July and August. “On balance, the September Beige Book suggests that the solid rebound in economic growth seen in the second quarter continued through the summer, but at a more moderate pace than in recent months,” said Barclays analyst Jesse Hurwitz.

A separate report, also published yesterday, showed that US productivity increased in the second quarter at its fastest rate since 2013.

However, Barclays said that it still expects productivity growth to be subdued in the near term.