Dollar Tree ($NYSE:DLTR) is on a roll - adding staff this year, and boosting store count growth more than prior years' pace, according to its alternative data. 

The company's stock kept pace with the S&P 500 for much of 2019, but Dollar Tree stock lost trajectory about a month ago, and shares are only up about 7% year-to-date, now lagging the market benchmark. As the company continues its digestion of Family Dollar, it keeps right-sizing its footprint - and soon the synergies it envisioned 5 years ago, when it began pursuing a deal worth nearly $9 billion, appear to be taking shape. 

First up is the discount retailer's store count - it continues to trend upward, and at a greater pace than in prior years, which the chart reflects. Dollar Tree has added 5% new stores so far this year - that's a contrast to Family Dollar, its subsidiary brand it bought after an all-out bidding war with its biggest competitor. Family Dollar stores (not shown) have fallen nearly 6% this year. 

We can tell from our next map - which puts together all Dollar Tree and Family Dollar locations - that the discount retailer's footprint grew to a fully-nationwide one after their deal completed in 2015. Part of that created redundancies, leading to some of the Family Dollar closures.

Finally - Dollar Tree's job postings - this reflects some seasonal trends: hiring grows in the spring, dips in the summer, and rises again in the fall - when so many other retailers are out filling their ranks with more holiday help. So far this year, job postings have risen about 29%

Analysts tracked by Zacks Investment Research are expecting earnings of $0.96 per share when Dollar Tree reports earnings August 29. 

About the Data: 

Thinknum tracks companies using information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

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