WASHINGTON–This month’s import cargo volume at the nation’s major retailer container ports should edge up 0.3 percent over December of last year, according to the most recent Global Tracker report from the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
Although the projected increase is slight, it is still a positive sign given how retailers had reduced their imports in recent months, said Jonathan Gold, NRF’s vice president for supply chain and customs policy. “Retailers are placing a cautious bet that consumer demand is increasing,” Gold said.
In October, the latest month in which statistics are available, U.S. ports followed in the Global Tracker report handled 3.5 percent less in cargo than in October 2010. The November estimate called for a 4.4 percent decrease.
Going into 2012, January cargo volume should be down 4.8 percent year over year, followed by a 5.7 percent drop in February. March should see an increase of 7 percent, while April is expected to be flat versus April 2011.