Retail imports to fall in February
Analysts expect an 8.4-percent drop in retail imports at domestic container ports in February compared to the same period in 2013, according to the Global Port Tracker.
While noting that February is usually the slowest month of the year, the report predicts a drop to 1.17 million TEUs for the month. This drop is anticipated to rebound during March to 1.29 million TEUs, a 13.7-percent, year over year, increase.
The eleven ports covered by the report handled 1.3 million TEUs in December, a 0.6-percent rise from December 2012, and will have seen an estimated 1.37 million TEUs in January, an uptick of 4.5 percent, year over year.
“Ports and distribution centers are getting the break they deserve after the busy holiday season, but it won’t last long,” Jonathan Gold, vice president for supply chain and customs policy, said in a statement. “Retailers will be moving spring merchandise toward their shelves in just a few weeks, and early numbers point to a busy season ahead.”
The National Retail Federation is anticipating an overall 4.1-percent sales growth in 2014.
Global Port Tracker — which covers Los Angeles/Long Beach, Oakland, Seattle, Tacoma, New York/New Jersey, Hampton Roads, Charleston, Savannah, Port Everglades, Miami, and Houston — is released monthly by Hackett Associates and the National Retail Federation.