Amid a COVID-19 Delta variant spike and disruptions due to weather, the August jobs report, as published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, came in under expectations, but retailers are jumping into the employment pool, recently announcing a number of hiring initiatives.
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 235,000 in August, the bureau reported, and the unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 5.2%.
So far this year, monthly job growth has averaged 586,000, the bureau noted. In August, notable job gains occurred across professional and business services, transportation and warehousing, private education, manufacturing and other services. Employment in retail trade declined over the month.
The Bureau noted that it had revised up the change in total nonfarm payroll employment for June by 24,000, from 938,000 to 962,000, and, for July, by 110,000, from 943,000 to 1,053,000.
However, many retailers are or are planning to add jobs even if not in what is considered retail employment. In just one retail hiring initiative example, Dollar General stated that, rather than store employees, it is seeking distribution center, DG Private Fleet and Store Support Center workers after a hiring initiative in which it has onboarded more than 50,000 employees since mid-July.