Divergent March growth for SoCal ports
Container volumes at the Southern California ports collectively rose 2.8 percent in March, to just more than 1 million TEUs, according to statistics released this week.
The Port of Los Angeles saw growth of 9.2 percent, to 600,000 TEUs, while Long Beach's volume fell 2.5 percent, to 412,000 TEUs.
The big change for Long Beach came in loaded inbound volume, which fell 7.5 percent, likely due the volume from its former California United Terminal (CUT) tenant Hyundai Merchant Marine migrating to Los Angeles. Last August, Hyundai began subletting space on APM Terminals' massive Pier 400 terminal in Los Angeles, as part of Long Beach's plan to redevelop the former CUT facility and the existing Long Beach Container Terminal into a larger, more cohesive single terminal.
At Los Angeles, outbound loaded volume spiked by nearly 19.1 percent, to nearly 193,000 TEUs during March.
Year-to-date volume at Los Angeles is up 10.2 percent, to 1.8 million, while it's up 6.5 percent, to 1.3 million TEUs, at Long Beach.
The trade intelligence firm Zepol Corp. said U.S. import volumes rose 1.6 percent in March, while year to date, volume is up 8.6 percent.
'Shipments departing from ports in Asia posted large decreases in March, with shipments from China and Hong Kong down 13 percent and 15 percent respectively from February,' Zepol said. 'Among other factors, the rise in oil prices has contributed to this slowdown.'