Survey: Small business hires steady in September

STEADY PACE: Small businesses added 74,000 jobs in September, little changed from the 71,000 created in August, according to a survey released Wednesday by payroll company ADP. While the rate of hiring was little changed, it was still down from the 81,000 in June.

The majority of the new jobs, 69,000, were at service companies. And most of the hiring came at very small companies, those with 19 or fewer workers. They added 46,000 workers, compared to 28,000 at companies with 20 to 49 workers.

SEPTEMBER SCORECARD: The ADP report, compiled from data provided by the company's small business customers, was released a day after software maker Intuit reported a very slight uptick in employment at its customers. Both reports show that small businesses are continuing to hire cautiously as they wait to see how strong their sales are, how the economy fares and how the health care law will affect them.

NEXT UP: The National Federation of Independent Business releases the results of a survey on hiring at its members. But the Labor Department's September employment report won't be released on Friday if the government is still shut down.

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