Macy's increases holiday hiring 2.6 percent

Macy's Inc , operator of the Macy's and upscale Bloomingdale's chains, said on Monday it would hire about 80,000 seasonal workers for the upcoming holiday season, a 2.6 percent increase over last year's levels.

Macy's will hire people to work as sales associates, work in store operations positions, at call centers, and in distribution and fulfillment centers to support the department store operator's growing online business.

The retailer becomes the latest, following Kohl's Corp , Toys R Us and Wal-Mart Stores Inc , to hire more people compared with last year as consumer spending continues to recover gradually.

Macy's has outperformed rivals like Kohl's and J.C. Penney Co Inc this year in terms of sales gains. Sales at stores open at least a year, or same-store sales, rose 3.7 percent in the first half of the fiscal year, which ended in late July, and Macy's expects them to rise at a similar pace in the second half, which includes the holiday quarter.

Macy's shares were up 2.1 percent to $38.40 in morning trading.

(Reporting by Phil Wahba in New York; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick)