West Coast Port Volume Up Strongly In August

   Today we got August port data from the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, which together account for 40% of total US inbound port traffic. The headline numbers were encouraging up 25% and 24% respectively year over year. From the Port of Long Beach:

                                    2010                  2009              %Change
Loaded Inbound       311,240              249,920              +24.5% 

Loaded Outbound    126,039              130,623              -3.5%

Empties                    173,723              112,796              +54.0%

TOTAL (T.E.U.)      611,002              493,339              +23.9%

From the Port of Los Angeles:
                                   2010                   2009               %Change

Loaded Inbound       399,150               323,269              +23%

Loaded Outbound    147,608               150,341             -1.82%

Empties                    217,077               138,610               +56%

TOTAL (T.E.E.)      763,837               612,581               +25%

 You can see that the data is somewhat misleading because it includes empty containers which surged in August, up 54% in Long Beach and 56% in Los Angeles. Ex-empty containers port volume growth was still positive, but not as high as the headline number would suggest. The reason given for the surge in empty container volumes was that shippers moved containers to Asia to address capacity shortages. One other thing of note was the decrease in loaded outbound containers which suggests that US exports probably weakened in August.

Black Swan Insights 


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