Fragile Recovery Keeps Small Business's Seasonal Hiring Plans On Hold

small business hiring on holdIn recent weeks, many chain retailers have announced plans to hire hundreds or thousands of workers for the holiday shopping season. With the nation's economic recovery still uncertain, however, smaller employers, aren't as willing to commit to seasonal hiring.

Lack of confidence that holiday sales will be strong is holding back many mom-and-pop stores from hanging out the "Help Wanted" sign, CNBC reports.

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With many businesses still cautious, it "is not the kind of environment that leads to strong job growth," says John Challenger, CEO at job-services firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

Waning consumer confidence is one factor that employers are eyeing, Challenger says, noting that the most recent measure of Americans' willingness to spend fell to 39.8 last month. That's much lower than the near-50 reading a year ago, and well below the average 59.6 that's been tallied so far this year.

While hiring trends at the nation's large chain stores often make headlines, small businesses play an equally significant role in employment, CNBC notes.

Small businesses employ half of U.S. workers, pay 43 percent of total U.S. private payroll and have generated 65 percent of new jobs over the past 17 years. Hiring is likely to remain lackluster until smaller employers feel more confident, according to statistics from the Small Business Administration.

"Certainty and growth have to be there," says Chason Hecht, president of Retensa, an employee-retention firm in Manhattan, "and right now, neither of those are very strong."

For more on why small businesses are hesitant to hire, check out the full article at

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David Schepp

Staff Writer

David Schepp has spent more than a dozen years covering business news for the electronic and print media, including Dow Jones Newswires, BBC News, Gannett Co., and most recently at AOL's DailyFinance. Nearly 10 years ago, he started writing a weekly People@Work column, looking in depth at issues facing workers in today's workplace. The syndicated column appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide before it made its debut on DailyFinance in 2010. Schepp now continues that tradition at Aol Jobs, covering the jobs beat and providing readers insight and analysis into the nation's challenging employment scene.

Schepp holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Metropolitan State College of Denver.

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