August gained 700 trucking jobs, lowest unemployment rate in seven years

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | Friday, September 04, 2015

August marked the seventh consecutive month of job gains for the transportation sector. After a modest job increase in July, the truck transportation subsector had a slight increase of jobs in August.

The transportation sector gained more than 7,000 jobs in August, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The truck transportation subsector experienced a small gain of only 700 jobs after the industry gained nearly 3,000 in July and more than 7,000 in June. Nearly 7,000 truck transportation jobs were lost in March, the only monthly decrease for the year, leaving a net gain for jobs for the year to date.

Trucks had the second-smallest increase within the transportation sector, next to pipeline transportation, which received 200 additional jobs. Rail transportation had the largest job increase of more than 2,000. Only two subsectors experienced losses in August: Water transportation and Warehousing/storage both lost 1,000 jobs.

Average hourly earnings for the transportation and warehousing sector were $22.80 for August, unchanged from July. Hourly earnings for production and nonsupervisory employees decreased 3 cents to $20.70. Average hourly earnings for private, nonfarm payrolls across all industries were $25.09, an 8-cent increase. 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 6.3 percent from 7.6 percent last August. The overall unemployment rate for the country went down to 5.1 percent. According to The Washington Post, the current unemployment rate is the lowest since April 2008 and is considered to be “full employment.” The number of long-term unemployed saw little change compared with the previous month at 2.2 million. However, that number has decreased by 779,000 in the past 12 months.

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