“Industry planning is in a state of confusion with the on-again, off-again tariff increases and the widening of trade disputes,” Ben Hackett, founder of Hackett Associates, said. “Where is all of this leading us? As long as consumer spending remains relatively stable, economic growth – despite being weaker – will keep the country on track for the next year.”
U.S. ports covered by Global Port Tracker handled 1.87 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units in September, the latest month for which after-the-fact numbers are available. That was up 0.2% year-over-year but was down 4.7% from August, when imports saw their second-highest level on record – 1.97 million TEU – ahead of tariffs that took effect September 1. A TEU is one 20-foot-long cargo container or its equivalent.
January 2020 is forecast at 1.85 million TEU, down 2.3% from January 2019. February – traditionally the slowest month of the year because of Lunar New Year factory shutdowns in Asia – is forecast at 1.59 million TEU, down 2.1% from a year ago. March is forecast at 1.76 million TEU, up an unusually high 9.1% because of fluctuations in the Lunar New Year calendar.
For more information, visit www.nrf.com.