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National Restaurant Association - Economist's Notebook: Restaurants set to double overall job growth

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Economist's Notebook: Restaurants set to double overall job growth

In his latest commentary, the National Restaurant Association's Chief Economist Bruce Grindy breaks down the latest jobs report.  Restaurants added more than 38,000 jobs in May, and are on pace to post their second consecutive year of job growth above three percent.  Meanwhile, the overall economy continued down the path of steady but moderate employment gains.

The restaurant industry continued to be one of the top job creators in the economy in May, according to figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Eating and drinking places – the primary component of the restaurant industry which accounts for roughly three-fourths of the total restaurant and foodservice workforce – added a net 38,100 jobs in May on a seasonally-adjusted basis, the third time in the last four months with gains above the 30,000 level. 

Meanwhile, the overall economy added a net 175,000 jobs in May, which essentially matches the average number of jobs added during the last 12 months.  The private sector added 178,000 jobs in May, while government payrolls declined by 3,000.

On a year-to-date basis through May 2013, eating and drinking places added jobs at a strong 3.2 percent rate, which is double the 1.6 percent gain registered in the overall economy. 

If the current trend holds, 2013 will represent the 14th consecutive year in which restaurant industry job growth outpaces the overall economy, and the third consecutive year in which the industry registered job growth in excess of 2.5 percent.  In comparison, the overall economy hasn’t posted job growth above 2.5 percent since 1998. 

Read more from the Economist’s Notebook, and get additional analysis of restaurant industry trends on Restaurant TrendMapper (subscription required).

Annual Job Growth: Total U.S. Employment vs. Restaurants

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics    *Year-to-date growth through May 2013

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