For-hire carriers added 7,300 payroll jobs in May, up from an upwardly revised 2,700-job increase in April, according to the latest estimates released Friday, June 1, from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Payroll employment in trucking was up 0.55% over April and 3.4% over May 2011. Employment is up by 109,100 jobs, or 8.8%, from the bottom in March 2010, but it remains 110,100 jobs, or 7.6%, below the peak in January 2007.
The overall U.S. economy added just 69,000 civilian nonfarm jobs in May. Moreover, BLS revised downward by 49,000 its initial estimate of April payroll employment. And unemployment edged up by a tenth of a percentage point to 8.2%. Sectors showing large gains were health care employment, up 33,000 jobs, and transportation and warehousing, up 36,000 jobs. The latter category, which includes trucking, was led by transit and ground passenger transportation, which was up 20,000.
The BLS numbers for trucking 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. Nor do the numbers reflect the total amount of hiring since they only reflect the number of employees paid during a specified payroll period during the month. Due to high turnover rates, the BLS estimates may overstate the number of job positions due to the methodology used in the agency’s Current Employment Survey.