State: Holiday hiring on par with last year

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Holiday hiring should be merry and bright this season.

The Employment Security Department is projecting holiday hiring on par with last year, according to an announcement from the agency.

Washington retailers are expected to add nearly 13,500 seasonal workers from October through December. That’s close to the 13,700 workers hired last year during the same period.

“The holiday hiring season is just getting started and will be in full swing by the end of the month,” said Employment Security Commissioner Dale Peinecke in the announcement. “This is a good time for job seekers to spruce up their applications and start watching for job notices.”

Labor economists for the department say the greatest amount of jobs — nearly 7,500 — will be in general merchandise stores. That number is down from the 1,100 positions in those retailers last year. Clothing and clothing/accessory stores are expected to hire about 3,700 holiday helpers. That figure is up slightly from last year.

Washington’s seasonal picture is a bit brighter than the national projections. Retailers across the country are expected to hire fewer seasonal workers. About 700,000 temporary hires are projected for the last three months of this year nationwide. That’s nearly 52,000 fewer than the same period in 2012.

Those on the lookout for holiday work can check employer websites as well as the local WorkSource office for listings.

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