Is the Anticipated Increase in Holiday Jobs Something to Celebrate?
To read the headlines last week announcing the projections for holiday hiring, you would have thought that the recession was really over. I know, it technically ended in June 2009, but who pays attention to technicalities when you're out of work? Jon Stewart already took the media to task for the headlines they wrote about his comments on Sanchez at a celebrity fundraiser for autism. (You can see the actual comments starting at around 5:42 in the video below. Directly following that, you'll see the headlines used to describe Stewart's comments.) While the headlines say "Stewart Slams and Rips Rick Sanchez," nothing could be further from the truth. See for yourself.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
Just as the media wrote headlines about Stewart and Sanchez that they wanted to believe, they are doing it again in this overly optimistic conclusion about holiday hiring.
Here are some of the headlines:
- Holiday Hiring Picture Gets A Bit Merrier
- A Hopeful Outlook for Retailers' Holiday
- Holiday Jobs: The Seasonal Hiring Spree Has Already Begun
- Retailers To Step Up Hiring For The Holidays
Bah! Humbug! The headlines are full of optimism and goodwill to man. But if you take the time to read the information in the posts, the headlines have about as much reality as a headline promising that Phoenix will have a White Christmas this year. Such as this quote:
Most retailers plan to hire more workers or the same amount as last year, according to a survey of 20 major U.S. retailers, including J.C. Penney Co., Abercrombie & Fitch Co., and Pier 1.
There's a huge difference in saying that retailers are going on a hiring spree, and the reality that many retailers are going to hire the same number of people they hired last year. Oh, and last year's seasonal hiring was about as festive as a lump of coal.
In 2007, (can we call that the good ol' days?) retailers hired 720,800 holiday workers. Last year, that number plummeted to 501,400. Doing the math, that's a loss of 219,400 jobs.
This year, according to Challenger, Gray and Christmas, a national outsourcing firm, retailers could hire anywhere from 550,000 to 650,000 seasonal workers. Or, another way to look at it, retailers would still be hiring anywhere from 70,800 fewer to up to 170,800 fewer people than in 2007.
Who's hiring? It looks like top honors goes to Toys 'R Us, which is proportedly hiring 45,000 temporary workers to support tthe 650 new "pop up" stores they're opening. If the projections for holiday jobs ends up on the lower end of the estimate 550,000 up from 501,400 last year, you could say that Toys 'R Us would be solely responsible for the bump in new seasonal jobs.
Experts are saying that the competition is going to be fierce for these holiday jobs -- average pay is set to be around $10.60 an hour. From KansasCity.com,
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