Ports along the West Coast handled their smallest share of container imports in March than at any point since last winter’s labor strife, reflecting slumping trade with China.
The ports, including the nation’s two busiest at Los Angeles and Long Beach, imported just 43.6% of containerized goods, down from about 50% in the previous few months, according to trade data analyzed by Beacon Economics.
A decline in Chinese trade hits ports on the West Coast harder than other regions, said Jock O’Connell a trade economist with Beacon. China’s cooling economy, along with sluggish global growth and persistent high inventories among U.S. retailers and manufacturers, have taken a toll on trans-Pacific trade. . The drop was particularly steep in March because many Chinese factories had closed for the Lunar New Year in February, reducing the flow of goods across the Pacific.
Source: The Wall Street Journal