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Holiday Hiring Is on a Tear, Signaling Wages Can Still Climb

  • Seasonal job postings at record as firms like UPS seek help
  • Wage pressure may spur more automation, BofA analyst says
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Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

The rising labor costs bedeviling corporate America are likely to linger for at least the next few months, as holiday hiring adds pressure to a labor market already grappling with pandemic-era challenges and resurgent worker unrest.

Employers like United Parcel Service Inc. and Walmart Inc. are seeking a record number of seasonal workers this year -- up 11% so far through October, according Challenger Gray & Christmas Inc. That’s the most since the firm began tracking plans in 2012. Retailer Nordstrom Inc. is on its first seasonal hiring binge since 2017, while education firm Chegg Inc. blamed the lure of Starbucks Corp.’s holiday wages for its brutal enrollment plunge.