Friday, December 26, 2014

Last year's swimsuit

The other day Gerald Perrins, the local data wonk at the Philadelphia office of the U.S. Labor Department, sent me 128 pages of local employment data. It's really fascinating. Here's a little tidbit: In the Philadelphia metropolitan division, which includes the city and the four surrounding suburbs, 23,100 people worked in clothing and clothing accessory stores in June, 2008. A year later? Just 20,000 -- 3,100 fewer people. That's a decline of 13.4 percent.

Last year's swimsuit

The other day Gerald Perrins, the local data wonk at the Philadelphia office of the U.S. Labor Department, sent me 128 pages of local employment data. It's really fascinating. Here's a little tidbit: In the Philadelphia metropolitan division, which includes the city and the four surrounding suburbs, 23,100 people worked in clothing and clothing accessory stores in June, 2008. A year later? Just 20,000 -- 3,100 fewer people. That's a decline of 13.4 percent.

So are you buying fewer clothes and accessories? Making do with last year's swimsuit? If you are, then maybe you are part of the reason why employment's down

There was a little bump up from May, about 200 people getting jobs. No point in getting excited, though. In most of the last five years, employment in clothing and clothing accessory stores rose by 200 from May to June. No idea why.

Employment also declined in general merchandise stores, like Wal-Mart or Target. Employment dropped by 1,500 from 27,300 a year ago.      

About this blog

Jobbing covers the workplace – employment, unemployment, management, unions, legal issues, labor economics, benefits, work-life balance, workforce development, trends and profiles.

Jane M. Von Bergen writes about workplace issues for the Inquirer.

Married to a photographer she met at her college newspaper, Von Bergen has been a reporter since fourth grade, covering education, government, retailing, courts, marketing and business. “I love the specific detail that tells the story,” she says.

Reach Jane M. at jvonbergen@phillynews.com.

Jane M. Von Bergen Inquirer Staff Writer
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