Trucking sees smaller job losses in May

Payroll employment among for-hire trucking companies in May dropped 0.6 percent from April levels and 9.4 percent from May 2008 on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to preliminary figures released by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics today, June 5. The latest numbers also reflect a slight downward revision in trucking employment levels for April.

With the estimated 8,100 jobs lost in May, the trucking industry has lost more than 67,000 jobs since the end of 2008 – a decline of 5 percent. Job cuts since the beginning of August when trucking job cuts began to accelerate total 116,600, or 8.4 percent. The BLS numbers reflect all payroll employment in for-hire trucking, but they don’t include trucking-related jobs in other industries, such as a truck driver for a private fleet.

Seasonally adjusted trucking employment peaked in January 2007 at more than 1.45 million, according to BLS figures. Since then, for-hire trucking companies have shed nearly 181,000 jobs, or 12.4 percent.

In May, the decline in trucking employment slightly outpaced that of the entire U.S. economy. Non-farm payroll employment fell by 345,000 jobs or 0.3 percent from April to May on a seasonally adjusted basis. Compared to May 2008, non-farm payroll employment is down 3.9 percent.