Hurricanes that swept the southern U.S. last month shut many retailers and put hiring on hold at small businesses.
That's the finding of payroll provider ADP, which said Wednesday that its small business customers cut 7,000 jobs during September. Many small and independent retailers in Texas and Florida had to close before and during Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and many suffered significant damage from wind, rain and flooding. That not only slowed hiring, but employees at some stores were laid off. The Labor Department reported a jump in applications for unemployment benefits following the storms.
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The hurricanes also curtailed overall hiring, ADP said, counting 135,000 new jobs at companies of all sizes — the smallest gain in nearly a year.