The protests in Los Angeles have shown up in SONAR. They’re minor ripples at the moment, but these things have a way of gaining strength.
There are already disruptions that will directly impact the warehousing and cross-dock operations of the Inland Empire — Ontario, California. Monitoring the situation is important to avoid being caught unprepared should things escalate.
After all, there are other issues being hashed out in the supply chain, such as the ILWU contract and a railroad cooling-off period that ends this coming Monday and could usher in a rail worker strike.
Just a couple of minor things that could get sucked into a sympathetic support mechanism.
Doom and gloom!
Yeah, yeah, or maybe, just maybe, I’m providing some data and insight into things you need to not ignore and pretend like everything is gonna be just fine.
Our first SONAR chart below is of Customs TEU imports into the Port of Los Angeles.
City outbound tender volumes in Los Angeles are heavily impacted by imported TEUs.
Highlighted is a divergence that appeared over the past 24 hours: city volumes dropping as TEU imports increased. This is not how the connection works. Import TEUs are the main driver of city volumes in Los Angeles.
This is indicative of the first, and hopefully the last, impact of drivers protesting and not hauling loads from the port.
Additionally, we see in the SONAR chart above that city outbound tender rejections bounced back up as tender volumes fell.
This strongly suggests that shippers are offering fewer loads as they are aware that drivers are refusing those loads in protest.
In summary, at the Port of Los Angeles, we are seeing more available loads, fewer tenders of those loads, and increased rejections of the loads being tendered.
This is odd, explainable, and important.
The SONAR chart above is comparing city load volumes origin Los Angeles and long-haul load volumes origin Ontario.
Port of Los Angeles volumes moving into Ontario for warehousing and cross-docking are moved 57 miles. This distance falls into the city length of haul from Los Angeles.
Notice that the peaks and valleys are askew as there is a delay from city move Los Angeles to long-haul outbound origin Ontario.
The divergence between the two is not abnormal as explained above by the delay.
The interesting or potential issue is that the drop in city volumes from Los Angeles is artificial in nature. It is not driven by a lack of loads. It is driven by protesting drivers.
In other words, the spigot has been turned off but the water is still building up behind it.
Will the delay be leveled by the “time buffer” from city load to long haul in Ontario?
Time will tell.
Peace and love