Trucking employment increased last month

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The for-hire trucking industry’s total employment grew by 2,600 payroll jobs in February, according to preliminary data released March 6 by the Department of Labor.

The DOL also upwardly revised trucking’s January employment total by 600 jobs.

The U.S. economy as a whole, meanwhile, added 295,000 jobs in the month, pushing the country’s unemployment rate to a multi-year low of 5.5 percent.

For-hire trucking employment now totals 1.4462 million on a seasonally adjusted basis — a 3.6 percent increase (50,900 jobs) from February 2014.

It’s also up 17.3 percent (213,000 jobs) from its most recent bottom in March 2010.

And total for-hire trucking employment could be months away from an 8-year high, as it is just 7,200 jobs shy of January 2007’s most recent peak.

For-hire trucking employment remains, however, half a percent (7,200 jobs) below January.

Employment in the broader transportation and warehousing sector grew by 18,500 jobs in the month, while manufacturing added 8,000 jobs and construction added 29,000 jobs.