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Holiday Hiring Increasing In 2011

MIAMI ( – Macy's plans on hiring 78,000 seasonal workers nationwide this year for the busy holiday shopping season.

Macy's, which has multiple stores in both Broward and Miami-Dade County, currently employs more than 170,000 workers across the country.

"We want to get everyone in place just as quick as we can to prepare them and train them as best we can for the holiday season," said Melissa Goff of Macy's.

Nationally, the retailer plans to hire four percent more seasonal employees than last year.

Retailers are gearing up for the holiday season by putting out the "Help Wanted" signs. Despite the still struggling economy, retailers are expecting a boon in business during the holiday shopping season and have started announcing hiring plans.

Analysts predict a slight increase in holiday hiring, according toNovaSoutheasternUniversityprofessor Albert Williams.

"This year we are expecting to see about 550,000 jobs across the whole United States," Dr. Williams said.

He also expects a small increase in holiday spending.

"There's still one out of ten people who don't have work but we have to focus on the nine out of ten who are still going to spend a fair amount of money," said Williams.

Dr. Williams broke down some of the numbers for hiring in South Florida. He said Wal-Mart plans to hire 700 holiday employees, Toys-R-Us is hiring 850 and Winn-Dixie is looking for 60 people in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties.

Dr. Williams says job seekers need to be flexible about hours, willing to take any kind of work, and most importantly, apply immediately.

Kohl's announced Tuesday that it would hire 40,000 people over the holidays, which is an increase of five percent from last year.

J.C. Penney said it would hire 35,000 people; while Target expects to hire more than 92,000 holiday workers.

Nordstrom has also said that if the momentum for the year continues, there could be greater holiday hiring for that chain as well, according to the New York Times.

Last year, around 496,000 temporary workers were hired by retail stores in November and December. That was a nearly 50 percent increase from 2009, but significantly less than before the Great Recession.

But, the news isn't all great. Specialty stores are not hiring as many people. Best Buy said it will hire half of the 29,000 workers it hired in 2010. Toys 'R Us also indicated that it would hire 5,000 less than in 2010.

Holiday sales in 2010 jumped 5.2 percent to $453 billion, according to the New York Times.

This year, the National Retail Federation predicts sales will go up 2.8 percent.

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