Real Estate, Employment, Shipping Show Promise for 2012

Now that 2012 is nearly two months old, the logistics numbers for 2011 are ripe for review and projection—particularly in three categories: Industrial Real Estate, Employment and Shipping Volumes. This summary comes courtesy of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics:

Industrial Real Estate

The industrial real estate market returned to pre-recession levels in 2011. During the recession, 153 million square feet of industrial space was vacated, but in the last six quarters, 160 million square feet of space was re-absorbed across every region in the U.S. (Source: Grubb & Ellis)
In 2011, warehouse and distribution space outperformed other industrial spaces. While logistics accounts for only 25% of total industrial space, it captured over 70% of total industrial real estate demand. (Source: Grubb & Ellis)

In Q42011, net-absorption in the Southern region led the Nation with +12.4 million square feet, and Atlanta led cities in the South and was second highest overall in the U.S. with over +2.7 million square feet absorbed in the 4Q. (Source: Cassidy Turley)

Employment

The unemployment rate in America fell to 8.3% in January 2012, the lowest level since February 2009. (Source: US DOL)

The logistics industry added 114,200 employees in 2011, accounting for 7.3% of the overall net employment gains added last year. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

The trucking industry added 40,800 jobs in 2011, 125% more trucking jobs than added in 2010. (Source: U.S. DOL)

2012 is also expected to see the freight railroads hire more than 15,000 employees nationwide. The average compensation for a railroad employee is $100k per year. (Source: AAR)

Volumes

Intermodal container volume set a new record in 2011 with 12.4 million moves, beating the former record in 2007 by 3.7%.

For-hire truck tonnage rose 5.9% in 2011, the largest year-over-year freight gain for trucking since 1998. (Source: American Trucking Association | Trucking.org)

The U.S. GDP increased 2.8% in the fourth quarter 2011 according to the first estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. (Source: US BEA)

And the Dow Jones Transportation index was up 2.9%during the month of January

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