Trucking industry adds more jobs in November, most since July

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 12/4/2015

November marked the return of net job gains for the transportation sector after October’s loss of jobs that was preceded by eight months of increases. The trucking subsector experienced a healthy injection of jobs.

The overall transportation sector gained more than 6,000 jobs in November, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the largest increase since August when more than 7,000 jobs were added to the economy.

The truck transportation subsector experienced an increase of more than 2,000 jobs after the industry gained 400 in October and lost 4,000 in September. November’s increase of 2,300 is the most since July when 2,800 jobs were added. September was only the second month of 2015 in which the trucking industry lost jobs. Nearly 7,000 truck transportation jobs were lost in March.

“Support activities for transportation” experienced the largest job gain with more than 6,000 eliminated. Couriers and messengers had the largest drop in employment with nearly 3,000 positions exiting the economy.

Average hourly earnings for the transportation and warehousing sector were $23.01 for November, a 7-cent increase from October. Hourly earnings for production and nonsupervisory employees increased 5 cents to $20.80. Average hourly earnings for private, nonfarm payrolls across all industries were $25.25, 4 cents higher from the previous month. Compared with a year ago, average earnings have gone up by 2.3 percent.

According to the report, the unemployment rate for transportation and material moving occupations is up to 6.8 percent from 6 percent last November. The overall unemployment rate for the country stayed stagnant at 5 percent. The unemployment rate for August through November 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 2.1 million. However, that number has decreased by 772,000 in the past 12 months.

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