Port officials and industry analysts attribute the record-setting import growth across the U.S. port sector this year to a strong economy that has spurred consumer demand and spending.
The Port of Oakland handled the equivalent of 76,706 TEUs of containerized cargo imports last month, making it the busiest October for imports in the port’s history, following a similar record performance just one month prior, the port confirmed Nov. 14.
Port officials and industry analysts have attributed the record-setting import growth across the U.S. port sector this year to a strong economy that has spurred consumer demand and spending.
According to the port, October’s cargo rush specifically signaled a successful conclusion to the traditional summer-autumn peak shipping season, the time when U.S. retailers import extra merchandise from overseas to stock shelves with for the holidays.
Port statistics show that Oakland’s current volumes are topping even those from 2005-06, when international container trade reached its zenith.
Through the first 10 months of 2017, Oakland’s import volumes are up 4.4 percent compared with the same 2016 period.
The port said its fiscal year 2018 total container volumes – including imports, exports and empty containers – is up 2.8 percent. Oakland’s FY 2018 began July 1, 2017.
“We’re encouraged by the results we’re seeing,” Port of Oakland Maritime Director John Driscoll said. “The test for the industry is whether or not we can carry momentum into [the] next [calendar] year.”