WASHINGTON —The U.S. Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the retail trade added 26,000 jobs in July to the overall gain of 117,000 jobs. Of retail sectors examined in the report, food and beverage stores dropped 1,500 jobs.
Building material and garden supply stores and gasoline stations also lost several thousand jobs, according to the report. Biggest gainer was health and personal care stores that added 9,000 jobs in the month. Department stores added the second highest number of jobs, over 5,000.
National Retail Federation President and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Shay issued the following statement on Friday’s overall positive jobs news: “Americans are breathing a sigh of relief that unemployment numbers are taking a step in the right direction. As an industry that provides jobs to more than 40 million Americans, consumer confidence in our economy and our government could not be more crucial as retailers inch closer to the holiday season. Now that the first chapter of the debt ceiling debate is behind us, retailers need Congress and the Administration to advance a strong jobs agenda that includes corporate tax reform, visa reform and passing the pending free trade agreements.”