Panjiva reports that trade activity remained strong in August
Building off of a strong month in trade activity in July, data from Panjiva, an online search engine with detailed information on global suppliers and manufacturers, showed that trend continuing into August.
U.S.-bound waterborne shipments—at 1,227,729—were down 0.3 percent from July, which was the highest ever month for shipments, with August second, based on Panjiva data. And they were up 7 percent annually.
Panjiva said that this strong shipment activity for July and August supports its position that retailers are feeling optimistic about the holiday shopping season, which has the potential to lead to a very strong fourth quarter for the retail sector.
Panjiva said the number of global manufacturers shipping to the U.S in August—at 179,286—was flat in August compared to July and up 12.7 percent annually.
“These numbers are encouraging and speak to confidence among corporate buyers,” Panjiva CEO Josh Green said in an interview.
Panjiva’s data coincides with promising data released by the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, which are both lending optimism for an active fall shipping season. And Green noted the Federal Reserve’s decision to hold off on tapering—or halting the $85 billion in bonds it is purchasing each month in an effort to lower long-term interest rates and spur economic activity—is also a positive heading into the holiday season.
What’s more, Green offered up that there is a generally positive feeling among corporate buyers that is being reflected in its data, coupled with how its numbers over the course of this year have surprised in terms of how strong they have been.
“The intention now needs to shift to consumers and how they behave in this holiday season,” he said. “We are seeing from the data that corporate buyers are feeling optimistic and unquestionably that is a good thing, but if consumers are not as positive heading into the holiday season it could lead to a situation where retailers are left holding too much inventory. Hopefully that does not happen. Corporate buyers have placed their bet and hopefully it is the right one.”
While August has been the peak month traditionally, Green said it appears that has shifted to July, explaining that he expects sequential declines in shipments through the end of the year, which he said will provide some guidance heading into 2014.