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Rail News: Intermodal

Volume up at L.A. port, down at Long Beach port in January


Last month, the Port of Los Angeles handled 698,715 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs), up 5.8 percent compared with January 2011 volume.

Import volume rose 5.3 percent to 356,395 TEUs, export volume increased 5.9 percent to 168,427 TEUs, total loaded container volume ratcheted up 5.5 percent to 524,822 TEUs and total empty container volume climbed 6.8 percent to 173,893 TEUs.

Through the first seven months of fiscal-year 2012, which expires on June 30, the port handled 4.9 million TEUs, up 0.9 percent compared with the same period in FY2011.

Meanwhile, the Port of Long Beach reported January volume of 456,424 TEUs, down 3.9 percent compared with January 2011 volume. Import container volume fell 5.5 percent to 229,125 TEUs, export container volume tumbled 8.2 percent to 117,083 TEUs and empty container volume slipped 5 percent to 110,216 TEUs.

“Import volumes typically pick up leading up to the Chinese New Year [on Jan. 23] as U.S. retailers stock up their shelves in anticipation of the holidays in Asia when most factories close down for a week or more. Conversely, exports of raw materials to China slow down,” port officials said in a prepared statement. “The decline in imports reflect caution in the retail sector.”

Through the first four months of the port’s FY2012, which ends Sept. 30, volume totaled 1.9 million TEUs, down 11.8 percent compared with the same period in FY2011.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/16/2012