October private-sector job losses narrow, but still hit 203,000

Just call it a month in which the private-sector job market treaded water: It lost 203,000 jobs in October, following a revised 227,000 reduction in September, according to data compiled in the ADP National Employment Report. September's original loss estimate was 254,000. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News had expected private employers to cut 200,000 jobs in October.

Separately, job-placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas said job cut announcements by U.S. employers fell to 55,679 in October, 16 percent lower than in September, CNMoney.com reported Wednesday.