Government Data Highlights Travel Industry Growth

Despite deficits in other sectors, the travel industry continues to increase job numbers and profits By: Michelle Juergen
The travel industry continues to increase jobs. // © 2015 Thinkstock
The travel industry continues to increase jobs. // © 2015 Thinkstock

The Details

U.S. Travel Association

According to data from recent U.S. Department of Labor and Department of Commerce reports, travel metrics remain high despite a deficit in other industries. 

Why It Matters:
David Huether, senior vice president of research and economics at the U.S. Travel Association, called the travel industry’s growth a bright spot in an otherwise gloomy set of metrics. 

While other industries are showing a deficit, the travel business remains healthy, outpacing job growth in the rest of the economy by 36 percent. The travel industry added 13,500 jobs in January for a record 8.1 million direct jobs, and travel exports reached a high of $222 billion last year. 

Additionally, the employment boost at the start of the year marks the seventh consecutive month the travel industry added jobs, and the employment gain was slightly larger than the average monthly rise in 2014.

Fast Facts:
- Since the employment recovery began, the travel industry has added 861,000 jobs. 

- Travel edged out nearly all other industry exports in 2014, totaling $222.3 billion, the second-largest industry export.

- Travel rose to 9.5 percent of total U.S. exports in 2014, a nine-year high.

What They Are Saying:
“On the year, more than one in nine (11.5 percent) new U.S. export dollars was spent by a foreign traveler in the U.S., contributing to a $75.7 billion trade surplus for the U.S. economy,” Huether said. “Without this surplus, the U.S. trade deficit would have been 15 percent larger.”