2017 marks the first time in at least five years that Amazon hasn’t hired more seasonal employees than it did the previous year.

Amazon.com Inc. will hire about 120,000 seasonal employees for the holiday period this year in the U.S., the same amount the retail giant added last year.

Those seasonal employees will fulfill customer service and fulfillment jobs, among others. Jobs are available at Amazon facilities in 33 states.

This will likely be the first holiday season in at least the past five years that Amazon, No. 1 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500, has not increased the number of seasonal employees that it hired over the holiday season, according to Internet Retailer data.

Here’s a look at seasonal hiring since 2013 by Amazon and five major competitors:


In announcing the move Thursday, Amazon notes that it has a total of 125,000 full-time employees across its 75 fulfillment centers nationwide.

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Amazon’s flat year-over-year hiring fits with a trend of retailers that aren’t growing their seasonal staff. Here’s a look at what other retailers have announced so far this year:

  • Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (No. 3) won’t be adding any seasonal help this holiday season, instead choosing to give existing employees additional hours during the holidays. This is the second year that Walmart has opted not to hire additional employees during the holidays.
  • Macy’s (No. 6) will hire 80,000 seasonal employees, down 3.6% from 83,000 last year. Among those 80,000 holiday workers, Macy’s will deploy 18,000 of them to its fulfillment centers, up 20% from 15,000 last year.
  • J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (No. 33) will hire 40,000 seasonal employees, the same as last year.
  • The Bon-Ton Stores Inc. (No. 171) will hire 10,000 seasonal employees, down 23.1% from 13,000 in 2016.

Other major retail chains, including Kohl’s Corp. (No. 18) and Toys R Us Inc. (No. 38) decline to say how many seasonal employees they hire this year, with both retailers saying only that they are adding seasonal staff.

Not all retailers are scaling back on their holiday hiring plans, however. Target Corp. (No. 20) will hire 104,500 seasonal employees this year, up 34.8% from 77,500 last year.