Trucking jobs increase after a month of huge losses

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 5/8/2015

April marked the third consecutive month of job gains for the transportation sector. After suffering a significant job loss in March, truck transportation – a subsector – had some gains in April.

The transportation sector gained more than 15,000 jobs in April, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The truck transportation subsector showed a relatively moderate gain of nearly 2,000 jobs after the industry lost nearly 7,000 jobs the month prior. Approximately 2,600 truck transportation jobs were added in February. Trucking jobs gained a moderate amount compared to other subsectors in the transportation and warehousing subsector.

The “support activities for transportation” exhibited the highest gains with an addition of nearly 5,000 jobs. Only two subsectors showed losses with “transit and ground passenger transportation” losing 400 jobs and water transportation losing 100 jobs.

April’s transportation job gain is much larger than March, which saw a gain of 9,500. February had a gain of 18,500, the largest increase in more than a year.

Average hourly earnings for the transportation and warehousing sector were $22.76 for April, down 8 cents from March. Hourly earnings for production and nonsupervisory employees decreased 10 cents to $20.66. Average hourly earnings for private, nonfarm payrolls across all industries increased 3 cents to $24.87. Compared with a year ago, average earnings have gone up by 2.2 percent.

According to the report, the unemployment rate for transportation and material moving occupations is down to 6.1 percent from 8.0 percent last April. The overall unemployment rate for the country made little change at 5.4 percent. The number of long-term unemployed remained relatively stagnant for April, but has decreased by 888,000 in the past 12 months.

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