A total of 612,659 (TEUs) moved through Port of Long Beach container terminals in November, an increase of 14.7 percent over the same month a year ago, according to data released Dec. 13.
Through the first 11 months of the year, Long Beach terminals handled 6.84 million TEUs, a 10 percent increase over the same period in 2016. The port handled a total of 6.77 million TEUs in 2016, meaning that with a month left in 2017, Long Beach has already exceeded the cargo total for the previous calendar year.
The port is on pace to handle more than 7 million containers for only the fourth time in its 106-year history, statistics show.
“Our focus on speed and reliability has positioned the port to have its busiest year ever,” Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero said in a statement.
Retailers making a last dash to stock goods for the holidays and after-Christmas sales helped imports surge 18 percent in November to 319,210 TEUs. Exports rose 4.5 percent, to 126,364 TEUs. Demand in Asia for empty containers grew that trade to 167,085 containers, up 17 percent.
“U.S. consumers are confident and the economy has been strong,” Long Beach Harbor Commission President Lou Anne Bynum said in a statement. “Retailers have been stocking goods as a result and we are nearing cargo levels we have not seen since before the 2008 recession.”
For the fiscal year to date, Long Beach’s volumes are 14.9 percent above FY 2017. The port’s current fiscal year began Oct. 1.
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