The U.S. economy added 215,000 jobs in March, nudging the unemployment rate to 5%. Despite the positive numbers, according to The Washington Post, a close eye is still being kept on the weakening global growth from the slowdown in China. Learn more about this and other marketplace topics in this month’s update. We welcome your thoughts on the issues that are impacting the transportation industry and your business.
Large Scale Market Indicators
As China imports and exports continue to decline, so does shipper confidence. February trade volume showed a significant decrease in China imports and exports, including a 25.4% decrease year over year for exports. Read more.
According to the recent Freight Analysis Framework study by the United States Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Bureau of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration, freight tons moving on the U.S. transportation network are expected to grow 40% over the next three decades to 25 billion tons. Read more.
In an effort to ease the way for veterans who want to become truckers, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) submitted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that calls for extending the time period for applying for a skills test waiver from 90 days to one year after leaving a military position that required the operation of a commercial motor vehicle. The goal is to give veterans a better opportunity to obtain a commercial driver’s license, while not impacting safety. Read more.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized a new food safety rule under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to help prevent food contamination during transportation. Most temperature controlled freight covered by this rule will need to be compliant within one year; small businesses have two years to comply. Read more.
West Coast ports are viewing 2016 as the year they’ll return to their normal 5% annual growth trend. In February, container volume in Los Angeles increased 42% year over year, while Long Beach increased nearly 36%. Read more.