By and and  on October 6, 2008

The banks got their $700 billion bailout from Washington Friday, but retailers got more bad economic news to dampen their holiday spirits.

The U.S. shed a seasonally adjusted 159,000 jobs in September, which was the largest decline in more than five years and included the loss of 41,000 retail positions. That marks nine straight months of shrinking employment for a total of 760,000 jobs lost so far this year and another serious blow to consumer sentiment. A surge of new jobs at specialty stores, however, pushed their payrolls higher than those of department stores for the first time on record.

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