U.S. private employers added 130,000 jobs in January, about three times the number that economists had been expecting, a report by a private employment service said on Wednesday.
ADP Employer Services, whose employment report was jointly developed with Macroeconomic Advisers, also revised the number of jobs created in December down to 37,000 from the 40,000 initially reported.
The median of estimates from 23 economists surveyed by Reuters was for the ADP report to show 45,000 new private-sector jobs in January.
U.S. Treasury debt prices fell and stock futures pared losses after the release of the data.
The higher-than-expected ADP numbers could push analysts to upwardly revise their expectations for the U.S. government's report on January non-farm payrolls, to be released Friday.
The median of forecasts from economists polled by Reuters is for non-farm payrolls to increase by 63,000 from a surprisingly weak rise of 18,000 in December.
"Wow, 130,000 on ADP, three times the expectation," said Andrew Brenner, market analyst at MF Global in New York. "Still think 50,000 (for payrolls)? -- I don't think so."