ATA reports truck tonnage rose by 6.8 percent in 2021

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Updated Oct 20, 2022
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The trucking industry moved 10.93 billion tons of freight in 2021, generating $875.5 billion in revenue, according to the latest edition of American Trucking Associations’ (ATA) American Trucking Trends 2022.

“The overall truck freight market bounced back in 2021 after falling in 2020,” says ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “Trends is a valuable resource to track changes in our industry, and this year’s edition is no different. This year’s report found that despite a challenging environment, trucking did experience growth and maintained its position as the dominant freight mode.”

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ATA says other findings in its report include:

  • Trucks moved 10.93 billion tons of freight – up 6.8 percent from 10.23 billion tons the previous year.
  • The industry collected 80.8 percent of the nation’s freight bill, up slightly from the previous year, while generating $875.5 billion.
  • Trucking employed 7.99 million people in industry-related jobs, up 340,000 from the previous year, including 3.49 million professional truck drivers.
  • Women made up 7.9 percent of the nation’s drivers (an all-time high), and minorities account for 46.1 percent of truck drivers.
  • Trucking remains a small business industry: 95.7 percent of fleets operate ten or fewer trucks, and 99.7 percent operate less than 100.
  • Trucks moved 66.1 percent of the value of surface trade between the U.S. and Canada and 82.7 percent of cross-border trade with Mexico, for a total of $828 billion worth of goods.

“ATA believes in data-driven policy making, and Trends consistently provides accurate and up-to-date information so industry leaders can base their decisions on the best data available,” says ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. “Trends is a trusted source of information on our industry and the economy and that is why it is found on the desks of countless elected officials, regulators and industry executives across the country.”

ATA American Trucking Trends is available for purchase now at

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