Kronos Retail Labor Index Shows Retail Hiring at Highest Level Since End of Recession…from Kronos


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Kronos Incorporated recently announced the October release of the Kronos Retail Labor Index™, a family of metrics and indices that characterize the current state of the demand and supply sides of the labor market within the U.S. retail sector. The October report includes data for September 2011. The analysis and write-up is prepared by Macroeconomic Advisers LLC, and is available on the Kronos Retail Labor Index website.

News Facts

  • The Kronos Retail Labor Index: (This index is defined as the ratio of hires to applicants within a given month, expressed as a percentage. A level of 3.0 percent means that for every 100 applications received, three hires occurred). The Kronos Retail Labor Index rose to 3.9 percent in September 2011, reflecting a strong gain in hires and a modest decline in applications, all on a seasonally adjusted basis.
  • Retail Hiring Level: The retailers representing 18,362 distributed locations across the U.S. that make up the Kronos®data sample made 38,252 hires (seasonally adjusted) in September 2011, up 12.6 percent from an upwardly revised 33,974 hires in August 2011. The level of hires in September was the highest reading in nearly three years and was 16 percent above its level one year ago.
  • Retail Applications Level: The number of applications received by retailers in the Kronos sample fell 1.7 percent to 985,915 in September 2011, from an upwardly revised 1,003,265 in August 2011, all on a seasonally adjusted basis.
  • Retail 60-Day Retention Rate: The 60-day retention rate, measured as the number of hires who remain employed for at least the first 60 days divided by the total number of hires made in that month, edged down to 83.4 percent (seasonally adjusted) in May from 84.2 percent in April (Note: There is a four-month lag on this indicator as two months are required to measure whether a hire remained employed for 60 days and Kronos customers have two months to return data on separations.)


Supporting Quotes

Chris Varvares, senior managing director and co-founder, Macroeconomic Advisers “The Kronos Retail Labor Index rose a half percentage point in September to 3.9 percent. Underlying the increase in the Index was a strong gain in retail hiring, which posted a 12.6 percent increase from August to September, to 38,252 hires, the highest level in nearly three years. The recent sharp uptick in hiring, coupled with a rise in monthly applications since earlier this year, suggests that retail labor market activity is picking up.”


Supporting Resources

  • Organizations that use Kronos hiring solutions employ approximately 15 percent of the U.S. consumer retail labor market, providing Kronos with a unique set of data on employee job applications, hires, and length of service.
  • The Kronos Retail Labor Index is released on a monthly basis. Go to to access: the full report; a schedule of upcoming Retail Labor Index release dates; the Retail Labor Index methodology; and downloadable graphics.


For more information on Kronos, please visit

Matt Lafata, HRchitect


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