Cashiers check out for Thanksgiving Day shoppers at a Target store in Chicago, November 27, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Nelles
Thomson Reuters

A significant consequence of the downturn in brick-and-mortar retailing is that thousands of people are losing their jobs.

In May, there were nearly 19,000 fewer people working in department stores compared to January, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, amid a record pace of store closures. This is happening because the US has built too many stores since the 1990s, and online shopping is booming.

A look back shows that retail jobs have been declining as a share of overall…