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Retail Industry Jobs Increased More Than 50,000 Over 2017 In June

Jul 09, 2018

WASHINGTON — Retail industry employment in June — excluding automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants — increased by 50,200 jobs unadjusted over the same time last year despite a seasonally adjusted drop from May of 25,800, according to the National Retail Federation on Friday.

The increase in retail employment accounts for about one-fourth of the 213,000 jobs added to all U.S. businesses for the month, according to the U.S. Labor Department said. "This is another solid, robust payroll increase that nicely closes out the second quarter and affirms a very strong economy,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Nonetheless, while payroll gains should translate into increased spending in the coming months, if the trade war spreads, it may become a turning point for consumer and business confidence that could affect spending.” The June numbers followed a revised monthly gain of 23,600 jobs in May, and the three-month moving average in June showed a loss of 1,300 jobs.

Retail jobs in clothing and clothing accessory stores, as well as non-store (including online), were up in June, while other retail categories showed declines. Kleinhenz noted that retail job numbers reported by the Labor Department do not provide an accurate picture of the industry because they count only employees who work in stores while excluding retail workers in other parts of the business such as corporate headquarters, distribution centers, call centers and innovation labs.

The NRF represents discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries.

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