Restaurant industry job growth remained steady and solid in July, according to preliminary figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Eating and drinking places added a net 29,300 jobs in July on a seasonally adjusted basis, marking the 17th time in the last 18 months in which the industry added at least 20,000 jobs.
The recent gains put the restaurant industry on track to add jobs at a strong 3.7 percent rate in 2015. This would represent the fourth consecutive year with restaurant job growth of at least 3.5 percent—a streak that hasn’t happened since the mid-1980s.
Within the restaurant industry, job growth has been broad-based in 2015. Foodservice contractors led the way during the first half of the year, adding jobs at a robust 6.8 percent rate on a year-to-date basis through June. In addition, this segment’s solid 2015 growth is following an even stronger 7.7 percent payroll expansion in 2014.
Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars—including coffee, doughnut, and ice cream shops—added jobs at a healthy 6.6 percent rate during the first half of 2015. If this pace continues, it would represent the fourth consecutive year in which snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars posted job growth of at least 5 percent.
The catering and mobile foodservice segment has continued its steady expansion in 2015, with employment growing at a strong 6.2 percent on a year-to-date basis through June.
Quick-service restaurants added jobs at a solid 3.8 percent rate during the first half of 2015, while the full-service segment expanded payrolls at a 3.5 percent rate.