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Help Wanted -- Maybe

By cnbc.com staff
Friday, 8 Dec 2006 | 9:46 AM ET

If you can't seem to find enough sales help at the store, there may be a reason. Margaret Brennan reports on "Squawk Box" that retailers may wind up hiring less temporary workers this year. Target and Wal-Mart all plan on keeping hiring at 2005 levels.

The number of holiday jobs -- posts filled between October and December -- peaked in 1999 at 685,000. The number was down to 630,000 last year.

Brennan cited a number of reasons for the decline. A tight overall labor market is making it hard for employers to find workers, while operational efficiencies at the stores mean fewer workers are needed. Finally, more people are shopping on line, which may mean a shift in hiring to companies like UPS and FedEx.

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