Retail giant Amazon's announcement earlier this month that it wanted to open a second headquarters -- which it said would bring "as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs" along with it -- has launched a bidding war. Politicians from Oklahoma to Connecticut to Pennsylvania are now falling all over themselves to get themselves noticed, waving tax breaks and other gifts and incentives.
Just how big a jobs engine is the Internet retailer, which earlier this year held job fairs around he country with the goal of hiring 50,000 applicants in a single day? A look at the data suggests local boosters might be onto something.
In June, Amazon employed 382,400, up from 268,900 the year before, according to its quarterly financial reports. That translates into roughly 113,500 net new hires in the past 12 months.
To put that in context: If Amazon were a U.S. state, it would rank fourth in terms of job creation over that time frame -- after Texas, California, Florida, and New York, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and just edging out Georgia.
Of course, Amazon has destroyed some jobs too. Department stores, for instance, lost nearly 30,000 jobs last year, according the BLS. (To be fair, it's hard to say precisely how many of these were due to competition from Amazon, as opposed to other online retailers or even completely unrelated business factors.)
Still, Amazon's growth record is pretty impressive.