Private-sector employment rose by 297,000 jobs in December due to a surge of services sector hiring, according to the ADP National Employment Report.

The seasonally adjusted data released Wednesday indicates non-farm payrolls rose to 107.5 million thanks largely to a gain of 270,000 services jobs. The ADP index is considered a key precursor to the December employment situation report, which is scheduled for release Friday by the U.S. Labor Department.

“The trend is clearly moving in the right direction and suggests that payroll employment could rise by more than 300,000 when the 'official’ data is released,” Diane Swonk, chief economist of Mesirow Financial, said in a research note.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.