POLB Monthly Cargo Dips Significantly

Image: Port of Long Beach.

The Port of Long Beach saw fewer amounts of cargo come through its docks in July than during the same month last year, data released by the port Aug. 15 show. July 2022 had been the port’s busiest July ever.

The Southern California seaport handled 578,249 TEUs in July, a whopping 26.4% decline from July 2022’s 785,843 units, which was a record month for the port. Imports also fell 27.9% to 271,086 TEUs (from 376,175) and exports dropped 17.6% to 90,134 TEUs (from 109,411) year over year. Empty containers for July also slid 27.7% to 217,030 TEUs when compared to the same time a year ago.

So far this year, Long Beach has processed more than 4.31 million TEUs, a 25.6% drop from the same span of time in 2022. The amount of cargo appears to be trending closer to pre-pandemic levels, according to the port, which handled 4.3 million TEUs through the first seven months of 2019.

The port attributes the declines to warehouses still filled with inventory and changes in trade routes and consumer spending habits.

“I am confident we will see our numbers improve as we work with industry partners to rebuild our market share,” POLB CEO Mario Cordero said. “Looking ahead in the near term however, we anticipate a modest ‘peak season’ for shipping as consumers spend a little less this year on back-to-school supplies and gifts through the holiday season.”

By Karen Robes Meeks