Nearly 300,000 jobs were created in February, the highest level in nearly three years.
That monster figure — 298,000, to be exact — comes from ADP, a payroll processing company that surveys the U.S. job market. The number far exceeded the 190,000 jobs that economists were expecting.
The hiring frenzy occurred in President Trump’s first full month in office, a fact which the Republican will no doubt pounce on in the coming days.
According to MarketWatch, the 298,000 figure is the highest in nearly three years, since April 2014. It is also the third-highest jobs growth number recorded since the beginning of the economic recovery.
Appearing on CNBC, Mark Zandi, the chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, said confidence “is playing a large role.”
“Businesses are anticipating a lot of good stuff — tax cuts, less regulation. They are hiring more aggressively,” he said.
Steve Liesman, an economics reporter on CNBC, called the ADP figure “a big number.”
“I’m a little breathless on this,” he added.
Liesman also said that the ADP report showed an “amazing balance” of job creation across the economy.
Construction companies hired 66,000, while 32,000 were added in manufacturing. Another 66,000 were added in the professional and business industries, and 40,000 in education and health sectors.
Both Liesman and Zandi noted that good weather likely played a role in the jobs blowout. The construction figure was likely higher than it would have been in a normal February with lower temperatures.
The Labor Department will release its nonfarm payrolls number on Friday. The strong ADP number will likely raise forecasts for the Labor Department figure, which is currently expected to come in a 185,000 additional jobs.