The National Impact of a West Coast Port Stoppage
Inforum Report Commissioned by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the National Retail Federation (NRF)
The last major port disruption due to a contract negotiation was the 2002 10-day West Coast ports lockout, which cost the U.S. economy several billion dollars and took months to recover. West Coast ports are a critical artery of the nation’s transportation infrastructure and essential for the seamless flow of imports and exports—cargo moving through West Coast ports represents an economic value of 12.5 percent of U.S. GDP
The NAM and NRF asked economists from Inforum to quantify the macroeconomic consequences of a West Coast ports closure, considering various durations of time. The Inforum analysis uses the LIFT economic model3 and breaks down the impact on U.S. employment, output and income if port operations cease for 5, 10 or 20 days at 30 West Coast ports along the continental United States (Alaska and Hawaii not included).