Retail industry continued to add jobs in July

Retail industry employment (excluding automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants) continued to grow in July, gaining 10,600 jobs over June, according to calculations by the National Retail Federation. Payroll data released by the Labor Department today indicated the economy gained 255,000 jobs in July — much stronger than expected.

“Job growth is moving in the right direction, benefiting consumers and retailers alike.”

Jack Kleinhenz
NRF Chief Economist

“While economic data can often be volatile and noisy, today's release and other labor market indicators continue to move in the right direction and counter assertions that the labor market had taken a turn for the worse after weak April and May numbers,” NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Especially encouraging is the 0.3 percent increase in average hourly earnings for all workers. Job growth is moving in the right direction, benefiting consumers and retailers alike.”

On a three-month moving average, retail jobs as calculated by NRF have increased by 11,700 positions over last year. Since July 2015, the retail industry has increased payrolls by 229,000 jobs.

Jobs increased in July even though the unemployment rate remained steady at 4.9 percent, indicating more people are actively looking for work. 

Bureau of Labor Statistics, seasonally adjusted