- Shippers and ports can expect an uptick in freight coming into the U.S. as the rate increase on the third tranche and the pending fourth tranche of tariffs approaches, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). The office of the U.S. Trade Representative delayed the enforcement date on the tranche three rate increase to June 15, it announced May 31.
- NRF and Hackett Associates' Global Port Tracker predicts imports will continue to show growth year-over-year despite record imports in 2018 that beat 2017 figures by 6.2%. NRF is predicting the first half of 2018 will post a 3% increase in landed TEUs.
- Public hearings on the fourth tariff list on $300 billion in Chinese imports begin June 17 and the new tariffs could be in force as early as June 24. As the process progresses "retailers are continuing to stock up while they can to protect their customers as much as possible against the price increases that will follow,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said in a statement.
Retailers may be letting out a sigh of relief that Mexico tariffs are not going into effect Monday, but that feeling is unlikely to last. Beginning Saturday, June 15, the 25% tariff rate on the third tranche will begin taking its toll on goods coming into U.S. Ports.
As a result, NRF expects total imported TEUs per month to top 2018 month-by-month totals to varying degrees at least until September. In October, the Port Tracker expects a 4.4% contraction in imported TEUs from last year.
Tariffs continue to bring record imports
|Import Forecast (TEUs)||% change year-over-year|
SOURCE: Global Port Tracker by NRF and Hackett Associates
"One must wonder who the Trump administration is trying to punish with its growing enthusiasm for tariffs," Hackett Associates Founder Ben Hackett said in a statement. "The tariffs are offsetting much of the savings from tax cuts, and if this continues there could be tough months ahead."