Economy Could Lose Billions in West Coast Port Shutdown, Study Says

Container PortWASHINGTON-The U.S. economy could lose as much as $2.5 billion a day if a prolonged shutdown of West Coast container ports takes place, according to a study conducted jointly for the National Retail Federation and the National Association of Manufacturers by economists at the Interindustry Forecasting Project at the University of Maryland.

Negotiations for a new contract agreement, which would cover about 13,600 dockworkers at 30 ports stretching from San Diego to Bellingham, Wash., are taking place between the Pacific Maritime Association, representing the ports, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. The current agreement expires today.

According to the study, a five-day stoppage at the ports would reduce U.S. gross domestic product by $1.9 billion a day. A 10-day stoppage would slash GDP by $2.1 billion a day, and a 20-day stoppage would cut into GDP to the tune of $2.5 billion a day.

"It is important for the parties at the table as well as others to fully understand the economic consequences of a port disruption," said Matthew Shay, NRF's president and CEO. "Any supply-chain disruption, whether it's a port slowdown or outright stoppage, would cripple international trade, stymie supply chains and hurt domestic employment and consumer spending."

HFN Staff | News & Commentary

HFN provides detailed information on the key home classifications: Housewares, Tabletop, Floor Covering & Rugs, Furniture, Home Textiles, Lighting, Home Decor, Mattresses & Bedding, Gifts, Major Appliances and Consumer Electronics as well as Business, Finance and Retail.

Videos

Subscribe to
HFN Omnichannel
Receive the news you need to know about the trends in the industry delivered right to your inbox.

Current Issue

  • HFN May digital issue

    HFN's DIGITAL EDITION

    May 2017


    COVER STORY: HFN Turns 90

    We commemorate HFN's 90th anniversary by paying tribute to the iconic retailer and supplier brands--and the people--that have helped the industry flourish, then and now.


    ALSO IN THIS ISSUE:

    • Up & Coming Leaders - The home industry is in capable and visionary hands as this year’s 40 Under 40 list attests. Today’s young leaders span all disciplines and varied levels of operation.
    • Omnichannel Retailing - In the Mobile App World, Time is Money