WASHINGTON (AP) -- A private survey shows U.S. businesses stepped up hiring last month, a hopeful sign for economic growth.
Private provider ADP says companies added 188,000 jobs in June. That's up from 134,000 in May, which was revised down just 1,000. The gain was the most since February and closer to the average of more than 200,000 a month that ADP reported from November through February.
Construction firms added 21,000 jobs, further evidence that the housing recovery is contributing to growth. And small businesses — those with fewer than 50 employees — created 84,000 jobs.
The ADP report is derived from payroll data and tracks private employment. It does not report government hiring. The survey has diverged at times from the government's more comprehensive monthly jobs report, which will be released Friday.