Trucking industry experiences largest monthly job increase of the year

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 8/5/2016

Transportation jobs experienced only its second monthly gain this year in July, including the third increase in trucking jobs.

The overall transportation sector gained nearly 12,000 jobs in July, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. Since the beginning of the year, the transportation and warehousing sector has a net loss of more than 17,000 jobs, down from 29,000 in June.

The truck transportation subsector experienced an increase of approximately 1,700 jobs in July after the industry lost 6,300 in June and 2,400 in May. Year-to-date, the trucking subsector has a net loss of 7,800 jobs. July’s gain was the largest monthly increase since last December when the trucking subsector gained 5,300 jobs.

Transit and ground transportation subsector experienced the largest increase with more than 4,000 jobs added to the economy, followed by warehousing and storage at 2,600 more jobs. Pipeline, water and rail transport were the only subsectors to lose jobs, with a total loss of 800 jobs between all three.

Last year, the trucking industry suffered a loss in only two out of 12 months. Nearly 7,000 trucking jobs were eliminated last March and 4,000 eliminated in September. December’s increase of more than 23,000 jobs was the largest in 2015.

Average hourly earnings for the transportation and warehousing sector were $23.33 for July – a 2-cent increase from June. Hourly earnings for production and nonsupervisory employees decreased 4 cents to $21.00. Average hourly earnings for private, nonfarm payrolls across all industries were $25.69, 8 cents higher from the previous month. Compared with a year ago, average earnings have gone up by 2.6 percent.

According to the report, the unemployment rate for transportation and material moving occupations is up to 7.5 percent from 6.9 percent last July. The overall unemployment rate for the country was little changed at 4.9 percent, after the first increase since April 2011 the previous month. Over the past five years, the unemployment rate each month has either declined or went relatively unchanged. The number of long-term unemployed changed little to 2 million, accounting for approximately one quarter of the unemployed.

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