The Teamsters union and unionized car haulers will start negotiations today for a new national carhaul contract that covers nearly 6,000 employees. The time couldn’t be better as the car hauling market is booming.
The National Automobile Transporters Industry Negotiating Committee exchanged contract proposals last week with the employer group, the National Automobile Transporters Labor Division.
The National Master Automobile Transporters Agreement and its supplements expire on August 31.
The last NMATA, ratified in 2011, was the first since the mid-1990s to provide wage increases in each year of the contract, according to the Journal of Commerce, which also notes that the union may be in a strong negotiating position because auto sales are booming.
The number of auto haulers represented by the NATLD has decreased over the years and primarily represents Jack Cooper Transport and Cassens Transport. Jack Cooper is the largest U.S. car-hauler, having acquired bankrupt rival Allied Systems in late 2013.
The second-largest car-hauler is nonunion United Road, which bought Waggoners Trucking in late 2013.
Car Haulers Look To Keep Up With Demand
Car-haulers are seeing a pickup in business, thanks to overall demand for new vehicles. U.S. consumers purchased 1.63 million new cars and light trucks in May, a 1.6 percent year-over-year gain.
Railroads are handling more cars, light trucks and automotive parts as well, with motor vehicle and parts carloads up 5.3 percent year-over-year as of May and 4.6 percent on average for the month, according to data from the Association of American Railroads.
Besides growth and demand, car hauling companies have did a great job consolidating. Car haulers have more to bargain with this year compared to back in 2011. You have to remember, four years ago, we were still dealing with the recession. Several car haulers were filing bankruptcy and car sales were slow. With a strong economy and growth in the auto industry, car haulers will have more to work with this time by.