WASHINGTON — U.S. businesses added 163,000 jobs in August, a private survey found, a decent gain that suggests that employers are confident enough to keep hiring.

Payroll processor ADP says the job gains were the fewest since October. But last month's hiring is still enough to lower unemployment over time. The economy is expanding at a healthy pace, spurred by tax cuts and robust consumer spending.

The ADP figures come a day before the government will release its official jobs data for August. Economists have forecast that Friday's report will show employers added a solid 189,000 jobs, according to data provider FactSet.

ADP compiles hiring data from millions of companies that are clients of its payroll services. Its figures frequently diverge from the government's data but tend to approximate them over time.