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Thursday, April 14, 2011

LA Port Traffic: Exports increased sharply in March

by Calculated Risk on 4/14/2011 01:32:00 PM

The first graph shows the rolling 12 month average of loaded inbound and outbound traffic at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in TEUs (TEUs: 20-foot equivalent units or 20-foot-long cargo container). Although containers tell us nothing about value, container traffic does give us an idea of the volume of goods being exported and imported - and possible hints about the trade report for March. LA area ports handle about 40% of the nation's container port traffic.

LA Area Port Traffic Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

To remove the strong seasonal component for inbound traffic, this graph shows the rolling 12 month average.

On a rolling 12 month basis, inbound traffic is up 17% and outbound up 9%.

LA Area Port TrafficThe 2nd graph is the monthly data (with strong seasonal pattern).

For the month of March, loaded inbound traffic was up 2% compared to March 2010, and loaded outbound traffic was up 11% compared to March 2010. This was the third highest month for exports ever, and the highest since the peak in 2008.

This suggests the trade deficit with China (and other Asians countries) probably decreased in March.