finally, a welcome employment trend report

Good news to start the New Year -- the unemployment rate fell by 0.4% to 9.4% in December, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Employment rose in leisure and hospitality and in health care but was little changed in other major industries.

With employment levels directly correlating to consumer confidence and willingness to spend in restaurants and bars, this positive shift bodes well for adult beverage sales.

BLS also reports that employment in leisure and hospitality increased by 47,000 jobs in December, with notable job gains in foodservice and drinking establishments (+25,000), continuing a trend in that segment. Since a recent low in December 2009, the foodservice industry has added 188,000 jobs.