FreightWaves Classics: Port of Mobile is a key Gulf Coast port

An aerial view of the Port of Mobile. (Photo: Alabama State Port Authority)

The ports of the United States are our nation’s windows to the rest of the world. Imports and exports flow through them daily, helping maintain the world’s largest economy. 

A key Gulf Coast port is located in Mobile, Alabama. It is one of the top 20 U.S. ports by volume. Located along the Mobile River where it empties into Mobile Bay, the Port of Mobile has  deepwater terminals with direct access to 1,500 miles of inland and intracoastal waterways. These waterways serve the Great Lakes, the...

FreightWaves Classics: Port of Philadelphia has served region for 300+ years

The Port of Philadelphia. (Photo: PhilaPort)

Like several major U.S. ports on the nation’s East Coast, Philadelphia has been a center of international commerce for over 300 years. 

Today, the Port of Philadelphia (PhilaPort) has a leading position in several areas of trade. These include the importation of “perishable cargoes from South America, high-quality paper products from Scandinavia, and premium meat from Australia and New Zealand.”

Early history

William Penn was the founder of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is...

Broad supply chain issues behind international intermodal container delays: NS

A photograph of a Norfolk Southern train rolling by a field.

The challenges in timely delivery of international intermodal containers are more about the wider congestion issues facing the supply chain and less about any capacity limitations on Norfolk Southern’s network, executives said during NS’ second-quarter 2021 earnings call on Wednesday.

“It’s not an issue of capacity. It’s an issue of throughput,” said NS Chief Marketing Officer Alan Shaw during NS’ (NYSE: NSC) earnings call on Wednesday.

Shaw explained that the accessorial program for the...

FreightWaves Classics: Port of Jacksonville is building for the future

A containership is berthed at the Port of Jacksonville, (Photo: JAXPORT)

Compared to most ports in the United States – particularly the ports along the Eastern Seaboard – the Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT) is a relatively new entity. It was created by a special act of the Florida Legislature in 1963 to develop, maintain and market Jacksonville’s port facilities.

However, the port area itself is hundreds of years old. In 1565 English sailors traded guns and ammunition to the French from Fort Caroline for food and a boat. This is considered the first...

FreightWaves Classics: Panama Canal serves shipping and commerce for more than 100 years

An aerial view of the Panama Canal. (Photo: Panama Canal Authority)

As most people are aware, the Suez Canal was blocked earlier this year for six days (March 23-29). According to the Suez Canal Authority, which maintains and operates the waterway, the canal has closed five times since it opened for navigation in 1869. Interestingly, the Panama Canal has never been blocked, and has only been closed for a day. That occurred in 1989, when U.S. military forces staged an assault in Panama to depose the country’s leader, Manuel Noriega.

A shortcut to the Orient


J.B. Hunt says service recovery hinges on several factors

Network fluidity the main catalyst for back-half results

Management from J.B. Hunt Transport Services said dislocation throughout the supply chain remains in place but that there is now some “momentum” toward improvement. On a call with analysts Monday night, management said “demand for our trucks, containers and trailers far exceeds our capacity to serve.”

Many of J.B. Hunt’s (NASDAQ: JBHT) customers are struggling to get merchandise moved due to congestion in the ports and on the rails. Also, labor shortages at customer facilities have increased the...

J.B. Hunt beats Q2 estimates

Q2 comes in ahead of forecasts

J.B. Hunt Transport Services (NASDAQ: JBHT) reported second-quarter earnings per share of $1.61 Monday after the market close. The result was modestly better than analysts’ forecasts for $1.55 and well ahead of the year-ago result of $1.14.

All of J.B. Hunt’s divisions saw “at least double-digit revenue growth” in the period when compared to easy year-ago comps, which included COVID-related lockdowns.

Intermodal revenue was up 21% year-over-year as volumes were 6% higher and revenue per load was...

SONAR Daily: Volume down on 10 key intermodal lanes

Facing difficult comps versus one year ago, loaded domestic intermodal container volume is now down on 10 of the 11 densest domestic intermodal lanes that originate in the U.S (see chart at top of file). Volume declines are not just an issue of difficult comps, they are also being driven by congestion and service issues that are delaying some intermodal shipments and sending other intermodal volume to the highway. 

In the past week, we have heard shippers complain about: 1) being allocated only...

Is intermodal going off the rails?

Chart of the Week: Intermodal Outbound Tender Reject Index, Outbound Rail Loaded Container Volume – USA  SONAR: IMOTRI.USA, ORAILL.USA

Intermodal rejection rates peaked near all-time highs over the past month as volumes fell. Looking over the past few months, volumes, measured by FreightWaves Outbound Loaded Container Volume Index (ORAILL), were actually higher in March and April while rejection rates fell below 2%. With trucking capacity extremely tight, are intermodal providers losing market...

J.B. Hunt’s sustainability report finds rising emissions, lower carbon intensity

J.B. Hunt releases its first sustainability report.

Supply chain service provider J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc.’s (NASDAQ: JBHT) first sustainability report for subsidiary J.B. Hunt Transport Inc. found an increase in scope 1 emissions but a decrease in carbon intensity. The report highlights the company’s social and environmental sustainability progress in 2020.

“We are not only committed to combating climate change but also to improving the places where we live and work. That is why we consider business decisions that prioritize positive...

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