Consumer Demand Fuels Strong July at Port of Los Angeles

August 20, 2021
Cargo and container box shipping to harbor by crane

Cargo Volume Exceeds 890,000 TEUs; Port Marks 12 Consecutive Months of Growth

SAN PEDRO, Calif. – August 17, 2021 – The Port of Los Angeles processed 890,800 Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) in July, a 4% increase compared to last year. Last summer is when U.S. consumer purchasing began to build momentum and was the start of 12 consecutive months of year-over-year growth at the Port of Los Angeles.

“This remarkable, sustained import surge is pushing the supply chain to new levels,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “Credit goes to our longshore workers and terminal operators for helping the Port of Los Angeles achieve an average of more than 11,000 TEUs exchanged on each vessel call, the best in the business. 

“With space at warehouses, rail yards and container terminals tight as we enter the traditional ‘peak’ shipping season, we are offering new data tools and incentives to help improve throughput and efficiencies. Additional strategies are being developed in conjunction with both the private sector and federal government.”

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July 2021 loaded imports reached 469,361 TEUs compared to the previous year, an increase of 2.9%. Loaded exports decreased 27.6% to 91,440 TEUs compared to the same period last year. It was the lowest amount of exports at the Port of Los Angeles since 2005.

Empty containers climbed to 329,999 TEUs, a jump of 20.4% compared to last year due to the continued demand in Asia. 

Seven months into the 2021 calendar year, overall cargo volume is 6,318,675 TEUs, an increase of 36.8% compared to 2020.

Current and historical cargo data is available here.

North America’s leading seaport by container volume and cargo value, the Port of Los Angeles facilitated $259 billion in trade during 2020. San Pedro Bay port complex operations and commerce facilitate one in nine jobs across the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura. The Port of Los Angeles has remained open with all terminals operational throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.