US Ports Hold Strong Amid Global Shipping Snags

Despite Red Sea tensions and canal hiccups, U.S. ports are pulling off some solid cargo numbers.

US Ports Hold Strong Amid Global Shipping Snags

U.S. container ports have been smashing it despite a backdrop of global disruptions, including violence in the Red Sea and delays through the Suez and Panama canals. We’re talking 1.87 million TEUs in December alone, up 8.3% from the year prior.

Here are the details:

  • The National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates project continued growth in cargo volume through the first half of the year despite only 12% of US-bound cargo passing through the Suez Canal.
  • With the shipping world better poised to manage disruption post-pandemic, companies reacted FAST, leveraging surplus capacity to keep things moving, especially on Asia to U.S. East Coast routes.
  • January 2024 was kind of a record-breaker, with a 7.9% jump in container imports over December—the biggest boost for January we've seen in seven years. Imports from China are especially on the up, nearly 15% more than usual.

"U.S. retailers are working to mitigate the impact of delays and increased costs," says Jonathan Gold, NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy.

The NRF is betting on a moderately strong 2024 kick-off, expecting a 5% bump in import container volumes for the first half compared to last year.

Sources: Supply Chain XChange | gCaptain | The Maritime Executive

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