California volumes mixed

The US ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have reported contrasting container throughput figures for May.

The Port of Los Angeles, the largest container port in the Americas, saw volumes increase 8.2% compared to a year ago with 689,141-teu.

Container imports rose 7.75% from 326,114-teu last month to 351,403teus in May 2014. Exports rose 2.3% to 158,473-teu.

Combined, total loaded imports and exports increased 6%, from 481,019-teu in May 2013 to 509,876-teu last month.

For the first five months of calendar year 2014, overall volumes of 3.3mteu have increased 8.2% compared to the same period in 2013.

In contrast Long Beach saw container numbers edged up just 2.7% last month to 599,509-teu, figures from the port show.

Despite the weak growth the figures marked the Southern California seaport’s busiest May since 2007 by reaching nearly 600,000-teu.

Inbound volumes were up 2.3% to 312,439-teu, while exports were flat with a slight decline of 0.3% to 146,702-teu. Empty containers rose 7.1% to 140,368-teu.

“While May was the second consecutive month of increasing volume, Long Beach has seen an increase of just 1.3% for the first five months of 2014 compared to the same period last year,” the port said.

Last year was Long Beach's third-busiest year in port history with a total container volumes of 6.73mteu.