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Understanding Minnesota's Retail Job Market

Use available data to help plan for your next hire.

As the economy picks up the Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA) has fielded calls from members looking to understand their local job market. Retailers planning for future employment needs have requested information on trends in the labor marketplace.

The State of Minnesota provides a variety of data and resources on today's jobs market.

One of our most used resources here at MnRA is the Positively Minnesota website maintained by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. This site aggregates employment information that can be sorted by industry and provides figures on useful items including current retail job vacancies.

Having an easy or hard time finding retail employees? might help you understand why based on what is occurring in the marketplace, and even more important give you information to position your operation for success in hiring.

Here are some useful links to help you access Minnesota's labor market information:

Wondering what the state and national employment and unemployment trends are?
See a snapshot of theses numbers here.

See why it might be easy or difficult to find retail employees in your area.
Click here to search vacancy rates by location and industry here.

When is employment data released?
See a 2013 calendar of when data is scheduled to be release here.

Does DEED have other resources and report are available?
Visit this webpage to see available information.

Looking for other labor market data or trends? Contact MnRA at (651) 227-6631, or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for information.

Mid-Session Retail Legislative Report

This week marks the mid-point of Minnesota's 2013 legislative session.

This week marks the mid-point of Minnesota's 2013 legislative session. Legislators returned to their districts for conversations with constituents, town hall meetings, vacations, and in some cases ice fishing. At MnRA we take the opportunity to inventory retail issues at the Capitol and provide you this update.

Click here to view MnRA's mid-session report.

U.S. Senate Votes for E-Fairness

Senators Klobuchar & Franken Lead on Marketplace Fairness Act

In what has been called a test vote on the federal Marketplace Fairness Act (S. 336), the U.S. Senate produced a powerful statement for e-fairness on Friday when it added the Act to a federal budget proposal that ultimately passed around 5:00 a.m. Saturday morning.

The Marketplace Fairness Act Amendment was adopted with bipartisan support on a 75 to 25 vote.  The vote margin indicates enough support for the bill that legislative champions will begin to seek an avenue for its passage. Since the U.S. Senate and House have different approaches to the 2014 federal budget, the Marketplace Fairness Act as amended to the budget proposal does not have a chance to work through the federal budget process.

"The vote clearly shows it is time for the Marketplace Fairness Act to move forward in the U.S. Senate, and also work its way through the U.S. House of Representatives," said MnRA president Bruce Nustad in reaction to the vote Friday. "Retailers in Minnesota thank Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken for their leadership and yes votes on this important retail fairness issue. The hard work of both Senators is reflected in the overwhelming support demonstrated in the U.S. Senate."

Both Senator Klobuchar and Senator Franken are among a group of 28 co-sponsors of the Marketplace Fairness Act. 

Retailers across the country as well as business trade associations, including the Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA), applauded the action of the U.S. Senate on the Marketplace Fairness Act amendment.  A simple tweet from the Retail Industry Leaders Association said it all as the vote threshold for passing the amendment was hit during the roll call vote: "WooHoo #efairness".

In a speech a day before the vote, Senator Klobuchar named several MnRA members on the floor of the U.S. Senate including Creative Kidstuff, the Uff-Da Shop, Target, Best Buy, and Thrifty White Pharmacy, saying, "Businesses in Minnesota can't compete if they don't have a level playing field to compete on. The Marketplace Fairness Act would help get rid of the loopholes in our tax code that hurt brick-and-mortar businesses and cost our state money."

Senator Franken also addressed fellow Senators that same day: "In Minnesota, the retail industry includes nearly half a million workers - about one in five jobs in the state. And those retailers need to compete on price - and on service - every single day. But the current sales tax system makes it impossible for them to compete. Requiring online retailers to collect the sales tax at the time of purchase - just like main-street retailers do - is just common sense. It's more fair. It will be better for state budgets."

MnRA supports efforts to move the Marketplace Fairness Act forward.

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