Indicators: ATA projects continued growth for truck freight; trucking employment continued momentum in Aug.

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CCJ‘s Indicators rounds up the latest reports on trucking business indicators on rates, freight, equipment, the economy and more.

ATA forecasts strong freight growth over next decade: In the latest edition of its Freight Forecast, the American Trucking Association predicts truck freight volume to grow 4.2 percent this year compared to last year and for that growth to continue over the next decade. By 2029, ATA predicts freight volume to have grown more than 35 percent.

Truck tonnage this year will reach 16 billion tons, ATA forecasts, with that figure projected to rise to 21.7 billion — a 35.6 percent increase — by 2029.

However, ATA predicts other modes of transportation to eat into trucking’s share of freight. Notably, movement of commodities by pipeline, the report says. ATA predicts trucking’s share of total freight tonnage to drop from 70.2 percent to 65.9 percent by 2029.

The ATA Freight Forecast 2018 to 2029 report can be purchased at atabusinesssolutions.com.

Trucking added 5,700 jobs in July: The for-hire trucking industry added 5,700 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis in July, according to the Department of Labor’s monthly Employment Situation Report. However, the DOL downwardly revised July’s originally reported gain of 4,400 jobs to a gain of 1,400 jobs.

August was the fourth straight month that trucking saw employment gains and the eleventh month out of the last 12 to post an increase, according to the DOL’s data.

Total trucking employment in August was 1.483 million — a gain of 30,600 jobs from last August. The U.S. economy as a whole added 201,000 jobs in August, and the unemployment rate held at 3.9 percent.

The manufacturing sector in August dropped 3,000 jobs, while the construction industry added 23,000 jobs. The transportation and warehousing sector, the umbrella sector of trucking, added 20,200 jobs, according to the DOL.

Trucking’s total is based on payroll statistics of employers and does not account for those who change jobs in the month or for those working for private fleets.