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SEPTEMBER 23, 2020
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Monthly Retail Imports, January 2019 to December 2020

Tallahassee, FL – As Florida and the rest of the United States continue to reopen, the Florida Retail Federation announced that retailers nationwide have set a new record of imports in preparation for the holiday season, according to a  report released on September 9. 

According to the data, U.S. ports handled 1.92 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEU) in July, up 19.3 percent from June. A TEU is one 20-foot-long cargo container or its equivalent.

August was estimated at 2.06 million TEU, a 6 percent year-over-year increase. Actual August numbers won't be confirmed until next month, but if reported as estimated, it will beat the previous record of 2.04 million TEU set in October 2018.

"Florida retailers are relieved to be able to restock and replenish their inventory after reopening the state," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "With the challenges we continue to face in 2020, Florida retailers are committed to making for a more joyful year's end for consumers during the holiday season. We want to support our customers during these challenging times and safely provide a merrier season for them and their loved ones."

The forecast for September is set at 1.89 million TEU, up 1.1 percent year over year. The report forecasts about 7.58 million TEU during the July-October “peak season.” This timeline is when retailers prepare merchandise for the winter holiday. According to the data, this forecast could make 2020 the third-busiest peak season on record following 7.7 million TEU in 2018 and 7.66 million TEU last year.

The data shared by the Florida Retail Federation is informed by a monthly Global Port Tracker report released by the National Retail Federation.  The Global Port Tracker is produced for NRF by the consulting firm Hackett Associates, which provides historical data and forecasts for U.S. ports. 

For more information on the predictions of the National Retail Federation, visit:  https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/imports-spike-economy-continues-recovery-and-retailers-stock-holidays

The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.


Published in Media Relations

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South Florida Business Journal

Published in South Florida

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