Friday, September 16, 2016

Monthly POLB Cargo Volumes Down

By Mark Edward Nero

August 2016 exports surged 14.8 percent through the Port of Long Beach compared to the same month in 2015, but lower imports drove overall volumes down, according to newly released data.

Harbor terminals moved 641,029 TEUs in August, an 8.9 percent year-over-year decrease, according to port data released Sept. 15. Of those TEUs, 321,625 were import containers, down 10.2 percent from the same month last year.

Exports numbered 159,247 TEUs last month, while empties accounted for 160,157 containers, 22.5 percent fewer than August 2015. That month, however, set an all-time record for Port of Long Beach cargo.

The port says that one factor impacting its container volumes is that currently, shipping lines are continuing to consolidate service routes to optimize vessel utilization during the holiday peak season and in anticipation of the new, planned ocean carrier alliances.

Another factor cited was that domestic retail inventories remain high even as strong consumer spending continues to power the nation’s economy.

For the calendar year, overall cargo volumes are down 2.9 percent at Long Beach, compared to the first eight months of 2015. For the current fiscal year, which began last October, total container volumes are down half of one percent compared to the same 11 months in FY 2015, according to data.

The port’s latest monthly cargo numbers are available at, while more detailed cargo numbers can be found at