By Mark Edward Nero
Container volume at the Port of Long Beach was down 7.7 percent in July 2016 compared to the same month in 2015, when harbor terminals handled a record amount of cargo.
Dockworkers moved a total of 637,091 twenty-foot-equivalent units last month. Imports totaled 325,608 containers, a 5.9 percent year-over-year decrease, while exports numbered 142,812 TEUs, a slight drop of 0.7 percent, according to data released Aug. 12 by the port.
The number of empty containers shipped fell to 168,671 units last month, 15.9 percent lower than July 2015, which to date is the port’s strongest July on record. Coming off 2015’s record year – the third-highest in the port’s history – volumes of empty containers at the Port of Long Beach are down 1.9 percent through July.
“Due to continued market uncertainty and high inventory levels, the traditional holiday peak season is off to a slow start and several national forecasts have been revised downward to reflect this softness in cargo movement,” the port said in a prepared statement regarding the numbers.
For the fiscal year to date, volumes are actually up one half of one percent, to 5.75 million TEUs from 5.72 million. FY 2016 began Oct. 1 for the POLB.
The port’s latest monthly cargo numbers and recent statistical data are available at www.polb.com/stats.