Restaurant job growth remained strong in April

The National Restaurant Association’s Chief Economist Bruce Grindy looks at the latest employment trends. The economy added jobs in April at its strongest pace in more than two years. Meanwhile, restaurant job growth remains solid, and is on pace to top three percent for the third consecutive year.

The health of the labor market continued to improve in April, according to preliminary figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The overall economy added a net 288,000 jobs in April on a seasonally-adjusted basis, the third consecutive month with gains in excess of 200,000 and the strongest monthly increase since January 2012.

The restaurant industry continues to be among the leaders in job creation, adding a net 32,600 jobs in April on a seasonally-adjusted basis. April represented the 50th consecutive monthly gain in restaurant jobs, and third consecutive month with an increase of at least 30,000.

Driven by the recent gains, eating and drinking place employment is up 3.2 percent on a year-to-date basis through April 2014, or nearly double the 1.7 percent gain in total U.S. employment during the same period.

Coming on the heels of the 3.5 percent and 3.7 percent gains in 2012 and 2013, respectively, this puts the restaurant industry on track to register job growth of at least three percent for the third consecutive year. The last time this happened was 1993-1995, when restaurant employment jumped more than 11 percent during the three-year period.

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