Published On: Tue, Jan 12th, 2016

Trucking Job Numbers Reach New Records

A report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics has revealed that trucking employment is at an all-time high. There were 5,300 new for-hire trucking jobs in December 2015. The total employment figure in the industry for December was 1.462 million. This impressive number is almost 20,000 higher than in December 2014. The increase is the largest since November 2013, when more than 30,000 jobs were created. These statistics suggest that the trucking industry is in good health, and so are its employment numbers. However, unemployment rates for transport and warehousing have risen slightly. The figure was 6.1% on December 2014 but was 6.2% by 2015.

Semi Truck

Earnings also saw a slight decrease in the industry between November and December 2015. However, across the year, they rose overall in transport and warehousing. Although there was a drop of 2 cents in December, average earnings went up by 2.5% in total. Production and nonsupervisory employees were worse off than others, however. Their wages dipped by 6 cents in the last month of the year. Nevertheless, the overall trend in wages was a positive one. There may have been decreases throughout the year, but the end result was an increase.

The increase in driving employment in December came second-best to June 2015. In that month, 7,400 jobs were created in the economy. Only two months out of twelve suffered a loss of jobs, which were March and September. In total, the transport and warehousing sector gained 23,100 jobs in December 2015. The US economy as a whole added 292,000 jobs. That means that the transport industry accounted for nearly 8% of all the jobs added in December. It was the largest job gain in the sector for two years.

Although the trucking subsector did well, others didn’t exit the year so successfully. Employment in the “support activities for transportation” subsector fell by nearly 2,000. However, other areas did even better than trucking. More than 15,000 courier and messenger jobs were created in December. And although unemployed rose slightly across the year, that wasn’t the case for the whole economy. Across every sector, it remained at 5% for the third month in a row. The figure is the lowest since 2008 and is the target set by economics. In the trucking sector, the number of jobs is more than the record from before the recession.

Other sectors performed well in 2015, including the construction industry. Sales of new-build homes grew by almost 15% during the year. This resulted in a boost to the sector, and 215,000 construction jobs were created. Car sales rose too, in part thanks to lower gas prices and interest rates. Consumers are clearly feeling more confident about making significant purchase decisions. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some sectors in trouble. Those such as the oil drilling industry are experiencing some struggles.

Overall, trucking and the transportation industry appear to be in good health. Trucking may be a viable option for anyone looking for work.