CCJ Daily Dispatch, Sept. 8: Trucking added back 10,000 jobs in August, still lags pre-pandemic levels

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Updated Sep 9, 2020

Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020: 

Trucking added back 10,000 jobs in August
The for-hire trucking industry added 10,000 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis in August, according to the Department of Labor’s monthly employment report.  That’s the fourth straight month-to-month gain after the huge fallout in trucking employment — 96,700 jobs — in March and April.

Since then, and led by August’s leap, the industry has added back 18,900 jobs as freight volumes and the economy at  large recover. Trucking industry employment  totaled 1,449,500 in August — down 77,800 from the pre-pandemic high in February and down 67,100 jobs from the same month last year.

The economy as a whole added 1.37 million jobs in August, according to the Labor Department, and the unemployment rate fell to 8.4% — well down from April’s 14.7%, but well up from February’s 3.5%.

Major freight producing sectors like construction and manufacturing continued to add jobs, too. Construction added 16,000 jobs in the month, while manufacturing added 29,000. Likewise, the warehousing and storage sector, part of the broader transportation and warehousing sector, added 34,000 jobs in the month.

ATRI asks carriers to rank top trucking concerns
The American Transportation Research Institute launched today its 2020 Top Industry Issues Survey, asking trucking industry stakeholders to rank their top concerns for the industry along with potential strategies for addressing each issue.

The survey, in its 16th year, not only ranks the issues overall but also provides details on where critical topics are ranked differently by carriers and truck drivers. The report also allows stakeholders to monitor issues over time to better understand which issues are rising or falling.

The results of the 2020 survey will be released October 27, 2020 as part of the American Trucking Associations Virtual Management Conference & Exhibition.

The survey can be completed here through Oct. 16.

ATA, Peterson Manufacturing partner to help truckers
The American Trucking Associations and Peterson Manufacturing will award $1,000 to each of 10 truck drivers who have undergone hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carriers can nominate a driver who experienced financial or other hardships during the ongoing pandemic here.

This initiative comes as a part of Peterson Manufacturing’s campaign for National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, Shining the Light on America’s Truck Drivers, which highlights and honors the crucial role truck drivers have played during the  pandemic. This year’s NTDAW is scheduled for the week of September 13-19, 2020.

Drivers will be selected by a panel of independent judges who will review the submitted nominations. By Sept. 20, the Spotlight Award will be given to the deserving nominees who will be contacted individually.

“For nearly six challenging months, drivers have kept the store shelves stocked, hospitals operating and the economy moving,” said Elisabeth Barna, ATA executive vice president of industry affairs. “While most of us stayed home, they got to work, and demonstrated why they are truly our highway heroes. We are forever beholden to them and their families for how they have delivered for us during our moment of need.”