Port of Long Beach sees decline in cargo volume in February

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Mar 10, 2017: Port of Long Beach has seen lower container volumes in February due to reduced economic activity in Asia associated with the Lunar New Year.

The overall traffic totaled 498,311 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), that represents a decline of 11.2 percent compared to the same month last year, the highest-volume February in Port history. Cargo in February 2016 increased 35.9 percent year-over-year.

The Lunar New Year holiday began January 28, almost two weeks earlier than in 2016. The Lunar New Year typically results in slower trade since businesses in China — the Port’s primary trading partner — close for a week or more to observe the holiday. The impact on the Port is seen two weeks afterwards, accounting for the time it takes vessels to cross the Pacific.

Import containers were down 15.6 percent in February to 249,759 TEUs. Exports were slightly lower, 119,811 TEUs, off 2.6 percent. Empty containers sent from Long Beach docks totaled 128,742 TEUs, a decrease of 9.7 percent.

More than 1 million containers have moved through the Port of Long Beach in the first two months of 2017.

With 175 shipping lines connecting Long Beach to 217 seaports, the Port handles $180 billion in trade annually, supporting hundreds of thousands of Southern California jobs.

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