Although this upturn contrasts with the significant losses in the sector in 2023, the current situation does not rule out the possibility of future decreases in employment.
In January 2024, the road transport sector saw an increase of 2,000 jobs, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although this upturn contrasts with the significant losses in the sector in 2023, the current situation does not rule out the possibility of future decreases in employment.
The bankruptcy of Yellow Corp. in August led to the largest drop, with a monthly loss of 32,000 jobs. Despite an increase of almost 13,000 jobs in the last 5 months, this scenario does not guarantee more favorable conditions in the near future. Data suggests that road transport employment hit its lowest point in August 2023 and has been increasing since then.
The first employment report of the year reveals revisions of data from the last five years, indicating a more severe loss of jobs in road transport in 2023 than initially reported, with a decrease of almost 49,000 positions. Nevertheless, net employment increased by 15,500 jobs, highlighting growth in storage, transportation support activities, and courier services. In contrast, the employment increase in 2022 was less significant than initially reported, with an increase of only 41,000 jobs instead of the previously indicated 61,000.
On the other hand, in January, average monthly wages decreased in the transport and storage sector. Median weekly earnings for all employees fell to $1,154.44, while hourly earnings increased to $30.38 compared to January 2023. For production employees, median weekly earnings dropped to $1,074.13, although hourly earnings increased to $28.72 from January 2023.
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 353,000 jobs were created across all sectors, maintaining the unemployment rate at 3.7%. In the transport sector, the unemployment rate increased from 5.8% to 5.9% compared to the previous year. The Consumer Price Index showed a 3.4% increase over the last 12 months, with a 0.3% rise in December, primarily driven by housing, gasoline, and food. Excluding food and energy, the index rose by 0.3% and 3.9% in the year.
The job outlook in the road transport sector during January 2024 shows signs of recovery with an increase; however, future stability is not yet guaranteed. Data revisions reveal a more challenging situation than initially reported in 2023. These findings are complemented by a wage decrease in January and a slight rise in the unemployment rate in the transport sector, while the Consumer Price Index reflects a widespread increase, highlighting persistent economic challenges.
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