November marked the second-busiest November of all time for the Port of Long Beach (POLB), with post-holiday sales planned by retailers spurring the port’s fifth straight month of cargo increases, according to a port release.
Toy sales surrounded the impending releases of Star Wars and Minions contributed to higher toy sales in October, spurring the shipping madness. Specifically, cargo volume increased 6.6 percent in November, compared with November 2014.
“Thanks to our industry partners, we have had consistent gains throughout 2015 and are on track to move more than 7 million TEUs this year,” said POLB CEO Jon Slangerup in a statement. “Retailers have reported a modest but healthy holiday season, which keeps us busy and the economy growing.”
According to the port, retailers aggressively stocked their shelves a few months ago, and have shipped those empty containers back to manufacturers overseas to be refilled for more anticipated purchases. The Toy Industry of America reported that sales figures were up 6.2 percent in October, partially due to sales of toys affiliated with the Minions and Star Wars movies, which came through the POLB.
A total of 619,699 container units (known as twenty foot equivalent units, or TEUs) moved through the port last month, with an increase in imports of 4.3 percent. Meanwhile, exports fell 4 percent, reflecting the strong U.S. dollar, the port stated. Empty container traffic rose 19.5 percent over November 2014.
Cargo volume at the port rose 6.3 percent in October. November’s numbers put the port on track to surpass 7 million TEUs in 2015, which would be just the third time the port had reached that total in its 104-year history. Such incidents occurred in 2006 and 2007, when the POLB reached 7.29 million and 7.31 million containers, according to the release.
The port is 5.5 percent ahead of last year in cargo traffic for the first 11 months of the year.
For all the latest monthly cargo numbers, click here.
For more details on the cargo numbers, please visit www.polb.com/stats.