Port of Long BeachCargo volumes have declined at the Port of Long Beach for the second consecutive month. In August, cargo volumes fell 1.9% compared to August 2017, coming on the heels of a 4.4% year-over-year decline in July of this year. Summer months are typically peak season for the port, however, ecommerce patterns are shifting the standard peak season, which could be contributing to the year-over-year shift. However, the primary driver of cargo volume declines have been the carrier alliances, which went into effect at the start of the year. For the first six months of 2018, the Port of Long Beach had steadily increasing cargo volumes.

The carrier alliances were also a cause of the cargo volume declines in July, and the port expected to see the impacts in August as well. “We were aware some ocean carriers would shift and adjust their services based on their needs and what they were seeing in the market,” Eric Bradley, senior writer at the Port of Long Beach, tells GlobeSt.com. “If that had not happened, volumes likely would have been flat or seen an increase. Still, we are moving historic levels of cargo at the Port of Long Beach. Through August, we’ve handled 5.3 million twenty-foot equivalent units. That’s 9.4% above the same point in 2017, our best year ever.”

While these alliances have had a negative impact on cargo volumes, this is more of an adjustment period, rather than a longstanding trend. “We’re confident in our ability to attract and retain business from ocean carrier alliances,” says Bradley. “The Port of Long Beach has the best facilities, unmatched rail links and access to warehousing for goods coming into the United States from East Asia. We also have a big local market to serve in Southern California, the most populous region in the most populous state in the U.S.”

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Kelsi Maree Borland

Kelsi Maree Borland is a freelance journalist and magazine writer based in Los Angeles, California. For more than 5 years, she has extensively reported on the commercial real estate industry, covering major deals across all commercial asset classes, investment strategy and capital markets trends, market commentary, economic trends and new technologies disrupting and revolutionizing the industry. Her work appears daily on GlobeSt.com and regularly in Real Estate Forum Magazine. As a magazine writer, she covers lifestyle and travel trends. Her work has appeared in Angeleno, Los Angeles Magazine, Travel and Leisure and more.

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