The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. Overall, US businesses added 164,000 jobs, the department of labour said.
“The jobs gains are looking very good and are in line with the continuing growth of the economy,” NRF chief economist Jack Kleinhenz said. “Irregular weather patterns have put some noise into the data this year in terms of fluctuating monthly numbers, but the overall trends show the underlying strength of the economy. Tax reform and regulatory reform seen over the past few months are expected to continue to provide traction for the economy and further job growth.”
While sporting goods stores saw the number of jobs increasing by 1,700, clothing being a weather-sensitive sector witnessed jobs going down by 5,300, NRF said in a release.
Economy-wide, average hourly earnings in April increased by 4 cents or 2.6 per cent year-over-year. The department of labour said the unemployment rate dropped from 4.1 per cent to 3.9 per cent, the lowest level since December 2000.
Retail job numbers reported by the labour department, however, do not provide an accurate picture of the industry because they count only employees who work in stores while excluding retail workers in other parts of the business such as corporate headquarters, distribution centres, call centres and innovation labs, Kleinhenz said. (RKS)
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