Rising wages due to the truck driver crunch won’t be felt by consumers, with businesses and carriers likely shouldering the burden instead, experts say.
“Consumers are so price sensitive and inflation is so low that raising prices will be hard for businesses,” Moody’s economist Ryan Sweet said.
The driver shortfall could reach 50,000 positions by the end of this year and could grow to more than 174,000 by 2026, according to the American Trucking Associations. To bridge the shortfall, some in the industry are calling for higher pay for truck drivers. One estimate forecasts that a 30 to 40 percent increase is needed to close the gap.
But Sweet said that’s unlikely, given that wages have risen less than the rate of inflation over the last three to four years.