WASHINGTON-Import cargo volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected to increase 9.9 percent this month, according to the latest Global Port Tracker report issued by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
“NRF’s annual forecast says retailers should see solid growth during the holiday season this year, and these cargo numbers back it up,” said Jonathan Gold, NRF vice president for supply chain and customs policy. “Increased imports show that retailers have gauged the market and expect increased sales.” Last week, NRF and shop.org projected that holiday sales for 2012 would rise by 4.1 percent.
In August, the most recent month with available figures, import cargo volume increased 3.3 percent over August 2011. The Global Tracker Report forecast a September year-over-year gain of 8 percent. The report noted that August, September and October are the busiest months of the year in imports, as retailers look to stock up for the holidays.
The report said November cargo volume should be up 2.4 percent over last year, followed by a December pickup of 4.6 percent. January should bring a decrease of 0.5 percent, followed by a February increase of 9 percent.