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Calendar Check: Black Friday Is Getting Closer

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with some shopping season indicators.

Black Friday, the height of the holiday shopping season, is a month and a half away but companies are already announcing significant seasonal hiring plans. The National Retail Federation says it expects strong holiday sales this year. Today, Amazon announced it is hiring 50,000 workers, thousands of whom it says, it will keep on after the holidays.

Overall, one industry group predicts there will be more than 400,000 temporary hires this holiday season, the highest figure in five years. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.