The two major ports in California and one of the two major ports in Washington state have reported declines in total containers handled during November, with only the Port of Seattle reporting positive growth.
Total container traffic volume at the Port of Long Beach fell 19.6 percent to 448,151 TEUs in November compared to November 2008. Loaded inbound container volume dropped 14.7 percent for the month, while loaded outbound box volume grew 4 percent. For the first 11 months of the year, the port handled 4,600,360 TEUs, off 24.1 percent from the same period last year.
At the neighboring Port of Los Angeles, total box volume fell to 580,206 TEUs for November, off 12 percent from the same month last year. Loaded inbound box volume fell 11.8 percent for the month, while loaded outbound box volume turned in a sizable 17.8 percent increase over the year-ago period. For the January to November period, total box volume at the port was reported as 6,186,004 TEUs, off 15.1 percent from the same period in 2008.
In Puget Sound, the Port of Seattle turned in its fourth straight month of increased total box volume, reporting 152,593 TEUs handled in November--a 15.1 percent increase compared to November of 2008. The port also reported loaded inbound box volume grew a whopping 34.4 and loaded outbound box volume rose 27.1 percent compared to the year-ago period. Despite the increases, and similar numbers over the past several months, the port remains in the negative for the year. During the first 11 months of the year, the Seattle port handled 1,437,953 TEUs, a decline of 9.7 percent compared to the January to November period in 2008.
In opposition to the positive news from Seattle, the nearby Port of Tacoma turned in its eleventh straight month of negative growth for the year. Tacoma handled 117,884 TEUs in November, an 18 percent drop from the total box volume reported in November 2008. Loaded inbound container volume dropped 27 percent and loaded outbound container volume fell 13.7 percent for the month. For the year to date, the port's total box volume is 1,429,295 TEUs, off 16.7 percent compared to the first 11 months of last year.