Supply chain problems have been well publicized and attributed to a variety of causes. One of the key problems, congestion at West coast docks, could get a lot worse this summer. The more optimistic among us have suggested that some relief could begin by next spring. Let’s hope.
Investors should recognize that the private companies that operate port facilities from Washington state to Southern California are due to begin labor negotiations. The contract with the union that represents 22,400 dockworkers, is due to expire in July 2022.
The negotiations, which involve 70 employers at 29 ports, have historically proven to be extensive, disruptive and contentious. This time, the union would seem to be in a particularly strong position. See our blog of November 10, 2021, “Strike While the Iron is Hot.”
All comments and suggestions are welcome.
Walter J. Kirchberger, CFA