Panjiva data shows global trade growth from May to June at a reduced rate
July 23, 2012
As was the case from April to May, global trade activity showed growth, albeit at a slower rate than earlier in the year, according to data from Panjiva, an online search engine with detailed information on global suppliers and manufacturers.
U.S.-bound waterborne shipments, which fell 2 percent from April to May, posted a 2 percent gain from May to June at 1,083,511. This is an improvement over a 1 percent decline from May to June a year ago, and total shipments for June were up 5 percent annually. Panjiva officials said that shipments for the first six months of the year are up 5 percent.
Panjva reported a 0.4 percent increase in the number of global manufacturers shipping to the U.S., with June reaching 149,487, which represented a 2 percent annual gain. This number matches up with recent months, which saw May reach 148,861 and April at 148,246.
“Relatively speaking, the numbers are holding up reasonably well,” said Panjiva CEO Josh Green in an interview. “If you look at shipments being up 5 percent [through the first six months of the year] with the economic headwinds we are facing, it we will take it.”
With the economic outlook still challenging, Green said the two top concerns—as they pertain to global trade—are consumer sentiment and the difficult situation in Europe.
While Europe’s various economic challenges are not having a direct impact on the U.S. yet, Green said should they continue it is likely they will start impacting trade flows across multiple geographies.
“If the situation in Europe deteriorates…I think you will start to see businesses phasing off on their purchasing and that will show up in the numbers later in the year,” said Green. “I think we are seeing an overall weakness with everybody looking ahead and wondering if we are heading into a recession or whether a modest recovery is coming.”
Despite these headwinds, Green said there is a decent possibility the economy could show signs of growth in the next two months as shipments begin to arrive at U.S. ports with merchandise for the holiday season. This will provide a glimpse into how optimistic businesses are feeling about the holiday season.
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