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Retail Employment Surged in April

Sector created 20,000 new jobs for the month.

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PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO

While the overall U.S. jobs market cooled some in April, employment in the retail trade grew by 20,000 – well above the 7000 jobs per month the sector had experienced during the prior 12 months. That’s according to the latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which showed the nation’s total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 175,000 in April, and the unemployment rate changed little at 3.9 percent.

The biggest gainers in retail were general merchandisers (+10,000), building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers (+7,000) and health and personal care retailers (+5,000).

On the other side of the coin, electronics and appliance retailers lost 3,000 jobs.

Overall, retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, contributing $5.3 trillion to annual GDP and supporting more than one in four U.S. jobs — 55 million working Americans, a recent study prepared for the National Retail Federation by PwC found.

Click here for more from the bureau’s April report.

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