A retail bubble over the last three decades in combination with growing online sales, many malls are now on the skids. Interesting challenge for the government of any developed country dealing with large scale job loss. The Silent Crisis of Retail Employment Brick-and-mortar retail is having a meltdown, and economists are starting to see the effects in the job market. Overall retail employment has fallen every month this year. Department stores, including Macy’s and JC Penney, have shed nearly 100,000 jobs since October—more than the total number of coal miners or steel workers currently employed in the U.S. Even America’s richest areas are getting hit: Employment in New York City clothing stores has fallen three years in a row, the longest period of decline on record, going back to the early 1990s.