Mixed report surfaces on trade
December 08, 2010 - LM Editorial
The common perception that October is the most active month for trade is a false one, said analysts at Zepol Corporation.
In a report issued yesterday, the Minneapolis-based research firm maintained that August “clocked” the most inbound ocean containers at 2.06 million.
“In the last 3 months, September, October, and November have shown month over month decreases of 4.66 percent, 2.87 percent, and 0.95 percent respectively,” said Zepol analyst, Chelsea Craven.
Zepol’s data is derived from Bills of Lading entered into the Automated Manifest System. This information represents the number of House manifests entered by importers of waterborne containerized goods.
Analysts for Zepol said that this is the earliest indicator for trade data available for the previous month’s import activity.
They qualify their findings, however, but admitting that the data includes shipments from empty containers, which may overstate totals from transshipments, and may contain other data anomalies.
According to Craven, December numbers may represent a “turnaround,” however, as a new surge in demand may reflect a strengthening economy.
Year to date, total import shipments are up 14.17 percent over 2009 and down 1.22 percent from 2008. Year to date twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) show similar numbers, up 15.95 percent over 2009 and down 0.98 percent from 2008.
Total shipments from Asia are down 2.11 percent from October, but European origin shipments rose 12.15 percent for the same time period.
TEU volumes show the same picture: Asia down 3.48 percent and Europe up 10.18 percent.