Port of Oakland telling same old story: Exports continue to soar
Volume grew 9 percent in January; import cargo on the rise, too
Oakland, Calif. – Feb. 9, 2017: New year, same old story at the Port of Oakland: exports are on the rise again. The Port said today that containerized export volume increased 9 percent last month compared to January 2016. It was the seventh straight month of rising exports in Oakland, and the 12th increase in 13 months.
And that’s not all, the Port said. Containerized imports increased last month, too, rising 3.6 percent. Overall, loaded container volume at the Port was up 6.1 percent.
“We’ve been cautiously optimistic about 2017 cargo volumes and this is a solid start to the year,” said Maritime Director John Driscoll. “In particular, we’re gratified by the continued success in our export business.”
The Port said agricultural commodities continue to drive Oakland export increases. For instance, strong harvests and aggressive marketing helped boost overseas sales of California almonds last month.
Import volume increased in January as U.S. shippers stocked inventories ahead of Lunar New Year holidays. Manufacturers in Asia sometimes close factories for up to two weeks.
The Port said its nonstop export rally is noteworthy because the U.S. dollar remains strong against foreign currencies. A strong dollar typically dampens exports by making U.S. commodities more expensive overseas.
The Commerce Department reported this week that the U.S. trade deficit reached a four-year high in 2016. That was attributed in part to export softness. Yet Port of Oakland export volume increased 10.5 percent last year.
About the Port of Oakland
The Port of Oakland oversees the Oakland seaport, Oakland International Airport, and 20 miles of waterfront. Together with its business partners, the Port supports more than 73,000 jobs in the region and nearly 827,000 jobs across the United States. Connect with the Port of Oakland and Oakland International Airport through Facebook, or with the Port on Twitter, YouTube, and at www.portofoakland.com.