August 26, 2022

Global supply chains have been all out of sorts since the start of the pandemic, but for the most part traffic and delays have been isolated to ports on the Pacific. As the video below explains, though, bottlenecks have now moved to East and Gulf Coast ports that are unprepared for this influx of ships and container boxes. 

Questions:

  1. What are some reasons why shipping traffic and delays have moved from Pacific ports to East and Gulf Coast ports? Continue reading
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June 22, 2022

Americans traveled in droves over the busy Father’s Day and Juneteenth holiday weekend, leading to widespread delays and cancellations at airports despite the best efforts of carriers. All told, airlines canceled more than 5,000 flights over the weekend while almost a third of all arriving flights on Friday were delayed. Travelers experienced similar moments of chaos at airports over Memorial Day weekend, reflecting an industry struggling to return to normal after the pandemic.

According to airlines, poor weather and high Continue reading

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Fuel costs continued to climb last week, reaching a national average of $4.59 per gallon. According to AAA, this represents a 50 percent increase from last year when many drivers chose to stay at home rather than travel the country on road trips. That won’t be the case this year, however, even as gas prices rise to their highest levels since 2008. Many Americans who have spent the past two years stuck in the same place are looking to hit Continue reading

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April 21, 2022

Before the pandemic, enormous shipping vessels bound for the West Coast of the U.S. from Asia usually took the same predictable and profitable voyages. After docking in either the port of Los Angeles or Long Beach, the ships would unload their cargo and then head up north to Oakland, where they stocked up on agricultural goods from California’s expansive farmland. This cargo would ultimately end up in markets around the world after journeying across the Pacific and disembarking in Southeast Continue reading

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March 29, 2022

With omicron infection rates falling and mask mandates expiring across the country, many companies are attempting to reestablish a sense of pre-pandemic normalcy by reopening offices and bringing employees back to stay. But while firms return to business as usual, the nation’s biggest companies may never again return to business travel as usual. According to the Global Business Travel Association, spending on corporate travel amounts to a third of what it was before 2020. 

For example, the consultancy giant Continue reading

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February 23, 2022

Last year, we looked at how rising inflation and supply chain delays caused by the pandemic were taking a big toll on small businesses, a situation that has not improved in 2022. In fact, small-scale entrepreneurs have struggled for years at this point while their corporate counterparts have thrived thanks to the advantages brought on by huge reserves of capital. “Larger firms have been able to weather rising costs and labor shortages better than smaller firms, which is likely Continue reading

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January 20, 2022

Although heavy traffic in U.S. ports did not end up canceling Christmas last year, the supply chain crisis still led to some empty shelves and expensive items as companies struggled to obtain needed inventory. Now that the holiday shopping season is long over, however, some officials are optimistic that the worst has passed as ports in Southern California work through their backlogs and shipping costs drop from their September 2021 highs. But like so many other aspects of American Continue reading

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November 18, 2021

Last year’s Thanksgiving was an unusual one: with travel restrictions largely in place and mass vaccinations still months away, fewer people traveled home to see their families for the holiday. According to AAA, however, that will not be the case in 2021 as the transportation agency expects 6.4 million more people to travel than in 2020. Lifted restrictions as well as clearly defined safety procedures for air travel have made many Americans confident about taking a trip for Turkey Day, Continue reading

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October 21, 2021

For months, supply chain problems have led to increased prices and long delays that show no sign of ending anytime soon. As a result, industry analysts are recommending that consumers start their holiday shopping as soon as possible if they want their items to arrive by December. While supplies remain low because of factors like jammed ports and truck shortages, demand is expected to ramp up this holiday season as experts predict a 7 to 9 percent increase in retail Continue reading

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October 13, 2021

Last month, we looked at how air travel has become so complicated during the pandemic that people are turning to travel agents to make sense of the mess. But not even the most experienced agents could have prepared Southwest passengers for the problems that many encountered this past weekend. On Saturday the carrier cancelled more than 1,000 flights and then another 800 on Sunday, followed by 360 more cancellations and close to 1,000 delayed flights on Monday. Southwest apologized for Continue reading

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