Jobless claims plummet to a nearly 7-year low

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The number of Americans filing new unemployment benefit claims fell sharply last week to the lowest level in almost seven years, according to a Reuters article.

Experts said hiring is regaining momentum after the unusually cold weather, snow and ice storms stunted its growth this winter.

Local employment services companies said the local job market woke up just in time for spring.

One local business owner said business is blooming.

"April 1 to June 1 is our busiest season," Posey Peddler owner Bridgette Arnold said. "We have proms almost every weekend. We start talking about weddings. We have big weddings in May and we have Mother's Day right in there so we always consider this to be our busiest time during the year."

Arnold hired two new employees this week to keep up with the current demand.

"We're excited for them to be here," Arnold said. "They need to get here soon."

Once the new hires start, they will not go any where when the busy season ends.

"I don't hardly ever hire anyone temporary, except for seasonal," Arnold said. "But they usually come back every season. There's a lot to the job so you have to have a commitment to stay for awhile. Unlike other retail, everything we do is custom made so you have to learn how to work with the customer so we can make what they need. It's not an office job, not that that's not mentally demanding, but it is a physical job and that's what surprises most people."

The business does not go away either when the busy season is over.

"Someone always needs flowers," Arnold said. "We have our national-known holidays, but we are pretty constant. I've been in business for 31 years so I've done my best to build it up so that everything rotates in and out, everything is a fresh product, the designers and store clerks are always educated so we can run it well. Our consumers should always be happy with us. At least, we'll try."

Arnold said she has hired enough people for this busy season, but interested persons should still apply.

"Write me an essay and tell me why I should hire you," Arnold said. "Send me an essay. That's what I do and I keep those on file. We're always looking for good people."

Arnold said all applicants should be able to come into work with a positive attitude.

"We have to have that motto around here that when you come into work, you're either happy or fake happy," Arnold said. "Flowers should make you happy."

If anyone is currently on the hunt for a job and needs help, visit the following links:

  • Southwest Information Office of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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