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How Does Amazon's Holiday Hiring Stack Up Against Brick-And-Mortar Stores' Hirings?

How Does Amazon's Holiday Hiring Stack Up Against Brick-And-Mortar Stores' Hirings?

The holiday cheer is spreading, with retailers, both online and those operating predominantly through brick-and-mortar stores, vying with each other in announcing their efforts at making this holiday season their best ever.

Vibrant Consumer

The expectations are not far-fetched. U.S. consumers are on a buying binge. Despite the fragile global economic conditions fraught with economic and geopolitical risks, U.S. consumers have not tightened their purse strings. Consumer spending accounting for two-thirds of the economic activity saw a strong 1.4 percent sequential gain, according to final second quarter GDP estimates released by the Commerce Department in late September.

Jobs and wages, the primary drivers behind spending, have also been positive.

Amazon's 120,000 Seasonal Hires, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) announced earlier Thursday that it is hiring 120,000 seasonal or part-time employees across its U.S. network of fulfillment centers, sortation centers and customer service sites this holiday season. This represents an improvement from the 100,000 hired in 2015.

Adding to the cheer, is the company's assertion that it is looking to increase the number of seasonal employees it transitions to regular full time roles after the holidays this season from 14,000 last year.

Brick-And-Mortar Stores Cautious But Not Far Behind

  • Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) said in early September that it is hiring 70,000 seasonal workers, although it represented a no growth from 2015. Target lowered its sales target for the second half of the year after reporting declines in sales and earnings for the second quarter.
  • Macy's Inc (NYSE: M) looks to hire 83,000 works for the holiday selling season, including 6,900 at its stores and distribution center in Ohio.
  • J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE: JCP) announced in September its hiring plans to employ 38,000 seasonal workers, an increase from the 30,000 hired in 2015.
  • Kohl's Corporation (NYSE: KSS) revealed a flattish trend, as it seeks to employ 69,000 seasonal employees, the same as in 2015.
  • The mother of all retailers, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT), employed 60,000 seasonal workers in 2015.

The statistics reveal that retailers are proceeding with optimism laced with caution as they approach the holiday selling season, which rings in roughly 20 to 30 percent of the annual sales.

At the time of writing, Amazon shares were down 1.15 percent at $824.51.

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