Los Angeles Business Journal

Los Angeles Port Traffic Ramps Up

By James Rufus Koren Thursday, April 12, 2012

Traffic at the Port of Los Angeles surged in March as factories in China resumed production after an early lunar New Year slowed activity in February.

The number of cargo containers moving through the port jumped 8.3 percent over March of last year. Imports drove that growth, showing a 9.3 percent bump over last March.

Factories in Asia typically shut down for at least a week to celebrate the lunar New Year, resulting in a production and shipping lull that drove down February figures this year. Importers made up for that lost time in March, bringing in nearly 325,000 shipping containers compared to fewer than 300,000 last March.

But March exports were down 2.4 percent to 188,155 containers, compared with last March. The decline ended a 21-month streak of export growth, though port officials say they aren’t concerned.

“Month after month, our exports have been up. This was just a 2 percent decrease – not too significant,” said port spokeswoman Rachel Campbell. “We remain focused on the big picture, which shows an overall increase in exports.”