U.S.-Flag Lakers’ Float Down 11.4 Percent in April
CLEVELAND—U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) carried 7.3 million tons of dry-bulk cargo in April, a decrease of 11.4 percent compared to 2013. The April float was also down from the month’s 5-year average, but much less so – 5 percent. U.S.-flag lakers moved 4.1 million tons of iron ore in April, 73.1 percent of the Lakes ore trade that month.
The 4.1 millions represent a decrease of 9.9 percent compared to a year ago, but an increase of 5.8 percent compared to the month’s 5-year average. Coal shipments in U.S. hulls totaled 1.5 million tons, 68.3 percent of all the coal moving on the Lakes in April.
The fleet’s April coal total was also a virtual repeat of a year ago. The 1.4 million tons of limestone that U.S.-flag lakers hauled in April represent 74.4 percent of the trade that month. However, U.S.-flag stone cargos fell more than 28 percent when compared to a year ago.