Strong demand for trucking jobs and tight supply and what do you get? You see pricing poised to surge in the coming year. In 2020, we faced a host of challenges with the COVID-19 pandemic and an economy in tatters because of it. Businesses shut their doors, and people sheltered at home to keep from spreading it. The demand to keep the nation’s retail shelves stocked was never higher as people across the country began hoarding everyday household goods like toilet paper and foods.
- 1 Why a Trucking Job Looks Promising
- 2 Strength in the Trucking Market May Continue for a While
- 3 Never Forget the American Trucker
- 4 What a Strong Demand for Trucking Jobs and Freight Means for Truckers?
- 5 Economic Stimulus Package
- 6 Thin Inventory
- 7 Fewer Drivers Coming out of Trucking School
- 8 Capacity Restraints Keep the Market Healthy
- 9 Beware of the Market
- 10 What Does the Economy Look Like?
- 11 Will the Vaccine Help the Trucking Industry?
Why a Trucking Job Looks Promising
Over the next ten years, the outlook in trucking looks especially promising as a truck driver shortage and growing demand for freight fuels ever higher job wages. Trucking jobs could have a shortage of 160,000 drivers by 2028. The advantage here is that job seekers will have no issue with getting a trucking job. If you have the right qualifications, you can earn anywhere from $50,000 per year to $100,000 per year, depending on the trucking job type. The pay will increase as the strong demand for trucking jobs grows. What other careers can you enter with only three to four weeks of schooling and earn that much money?
Strength in the Trucking Market May Continue for a While
Many analysts predict strong earnings in the coming quarters for trucking, which will likely continue for a while. Many people had lower expectations in the second quarter of 2020 because of COVID-19. Strong demand for trucking jobs did fall during this time, but it has since recovered. Year after year, we have seen growth in the trucking industry. Despite the pandemic, the strong demand for trucking jobs and freight remains high as people continue to buy products online. This directly fuels and supports the trucking industry.
Never Forget the American Trucker
American truckers supported us throughout the pandemic and ensured that store shelves remained stocked with supplies. They had a hard time doing it and endangered their lives, but they sustained the strong demand for trucking jobs. Often, truckers don’t receive the praise they deserve, despite being the American economy’s backbone. Hopefully, the American public will not forget how they saved us all from conditions that would have undoubtedly worsened without truckers.
What a Strong Demand for Trucking Jobs and Freight Means for Truckers?
Anyone looking to start a new career in trucking will have the advantage of strong demand for trucking jobs, which ensures the prosperity and growth of the industry for the future. Trucking jobs offer you one of the most stable jobs because the demand for freight will always exist. It may fluctuate at times, but it will remain consistent.
The recent events provide the industry with momentum. The outlook, in general, looks optimistic. Ongoing increases in driver pay point to another great sign: profitability. As long as the profits remain high, everyone will see increased pay for the coming years.
Economic Stimulus Package
In March, Congress passed a $2.2 trillion stimulus package. This relieved some of the strain that businesses felt during the pandemic as millions were left looking for work. Unfortunately, negotiations for future stimulus packages have stalled in Congress. You have people spending money despite how their jobs never returned, which has sustained freight demand for the time. Eventually, this could equate to less demand, but we haven’t seen that happen now.
The supply of drivers remains tight, which means that the cost of shipping freight will cost more in 2021, making it more profitable.
The retail sales growth has outpaced its inventory in the third quarter. That signals a strong economy that will keep the trucking sector stable. You still have a thin inventory with some products like foods, retail consumables, beverages, and home improvement items. Granted, you don’t have it as bad as during the worst of the pandemic.
Correcting thin inventory from the pandemic could last through the first quarter of 2021. While retailers have made progress on inventory, they remain low enough to where they still want to keep a healthy stock of it on shelves. This lack of inventory will fuel a highly profitable trucking market in 2021.
Fewer Drivers Coming out of Trucking School
The strong demand for trucking jobs has tightened because driving schools have produced less than 70 percent of their usual drivers’ output from before the pandemic. At the same time, 50,000 drivers have lost their CDLs because of the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse. When you add in truckers who decided to retire early because of COVID-19, the driver shortage will cause skyrocketing prices for freight.
Capacity Restraints Keep the Market Healthy
You have an advantage for the trucking industry with a driver shortage of 60,000. With the limited drivers that can fulfill this strong demand for trucking jobs, freight prices will remain steady no matter what happens. Everything previously mentioned should translate to much higher rates for truckers. In comparison to last year, rates have risen two percent in 2020. Considering how the second quarter was a time of panic for many business owners, that is a miracle. The demand for goods reflects the cost of freight.
Beware of the Market
Things look deceptively prosperous, but we have a good reason for caution, especially when securing new equipment. Due to COVID-19, OEM parts have experienced supply shortages. Trucking companies that want new trucks may worry about getting this new equipment if they need it because of the shortages. Some order cancellations may occur in the coming year, but we can’t predict what will happen.
What Does the Economy Look Like?
The economy has proven surprisingly elastic in this crisis. The economic growth still lags at 10 percent behind the pre-pandemic levels, but that was expected. It’s doing OK considering where we came from. COVID-19 gave us the worst economic crisis that we have had since the Great Recession. An estimated 100,000 establishments had to close their doors during the pandemic temporarily. You have many businesses that were forced into bankruptcy because they weren’t financially prepared for the strain.
Even with the United States government helping out, you still had many businesses that were buried because of COVID-19.
Will the Vaccine Help the Trucking Industry?
Some people remain optimistic, but you have to remember how you have an estimated 40 percent of the population that remains skeptical of the vaccine. Widespread vaccinations could cause people to buy services rather than goods, which would negatively impact trucking.
Still, many people will have the incentive to take the vaccine because they won’t be allowed into events without proof that they had the vaccination. Without the vaccine, they can’t return to everyday life. If you want to enter an NCAA basketball game, you will need to prove that you received the vaccination. Many businesses might require it of employees as well because they don’t want the interruption from COVID.
Getting the vaccine will boost manufacturing back to healthy levels. As long as freight demand remains high, the outlook for the trucking industry looks illuminated with promise.
Trucking companies have already reported strong earnings from the move to restock American shelves. In August, freight volumes rose higher than in 2019. The freight market’s strength will likely continue through 2020, and it will enter 2021 with a bold entrance. One thing worth noting is that the demand wasn’t evenly spread across the industries as some recovered more quickly than others. Truckers have a prime opportunity in this market, and those getting trucking jobs right now will go with a strong demand for trucking jobs at their backs.
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