Best Buy said Tuesday it is hiring 29,000 seasonal employees for the holiday shopping season as electronics sales appear headed for modest growth this year.
That's up from approximately 25,000 seasonal hires last year, and 24,000 in 2008. The Richfield-based retailer said the additional hires are because of new store openings.
Deloitte LLP's retail group is projecting that holiday sales will rise 2 percent, compared to a 1 percent increase in 2009. High unemployment and a depressed housing market have adversely affected consumer confidence.
Still two months from the official launch of the holiday shopping season, retailers are offering a mixed bag of seasonal hiring intentions.
Macy's said it plans to hire slightly more holiday workers this year, or about 65,000 temporary employees, because it expects a 3 to 3.5 percent increase in same-store sales in the second half of fiscal 2010.
Toys R Us said it will hire as many as 45,000 extra holiday workers this year, 10,000 more than in previous years. Much of the additional hiring is tied to the needs of the firm's 600 smaller stores in shopping malls.
However, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it would hire about the same number of holiday employees as it did last year.
Minneapolis-based Target Corp. offered no details about whether holiday season hiring will be up or down, saying it varies by store location.
Steve Alexander • 612 673-4553