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U.S. imports are consistently rising, even topping pre-COVID numbers, largely due to China. But watch out for declining trans-Pacific rates which may hint at changes ahead. TLC remains on top of these shifts, prioritizing efficient deliveries and transparent communication.


Despite the pessimistic narrative on the so-called “plunge” in U.S. imports, the real story appears to be more optimistic.

U.S. imports have been on the rise every month since February, and September data from Descartes Systems Group reveals this trend continues. September’s imports were up 0.3% from August and have climbed a staggering 27% since February’s dip during the Chinese New Year. When contrasted with pre-COVID times, imports in September saw an 8% rise from 2019 figures, 9% from 2018, and a considerable 15.5% surge from 2017.

This impressive growth remains significant even when offset against the extraordinary COVID-era shipping boom of 2021-2022. China’s export figures have bolstered these numbers with U.S. imports from China in September, constituting 39.3% of total imports and marking their highest point since August 2022. Meanwhile, predictions from the National Retail Federation and Global Port Tracker indicate continued strength in cargo volumes for the rest of the year.

However, the declining trans-Pacific spot rates suggest a potential easing in volumes come the fourth quarter. As this dynamic unfolds, TLC remains steadfast in leveraging this data to optimize routes, streamline deliveries, and ensure clients remain well-informed, ensuring goods reach their destinations efficiently and cost-effectively.

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