Great Lakes iron ore, limestone trading strong

Loadings of iron ore and limestone remain at healthy levels.

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 6.46 million tons in July, an increase of 7 percent compared to a year ago. Shipments were also 11 percent ahead of the month’s five-year average.

Year-to-date, the iron ore trade stands at 26.6 million tons, a decrease of 3.2 percent compared to the same point in 2017. However, iron shipments are 5.6 percent ahead of the five-year average for the first seven months of the year.

Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3,985,544 tons in July, an increase of 3.1 percent compared to a year ago. The trade also bettered the month’s five-year average by 5.5 percent.

Loadings from U.S. quarries totaled 3.142 million tons, a decrease equal to one cargo in a mid-sized laker. Shipments from Canadian quarries rose to 843,000 tons, an increase of 20 percent, and the highest monthly total this decade.

Year-to-date the Lakes limestone trade stands at 13.3 million tons, an increase of 5 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings from Michigan and Ohio quarries total 10.85 million tons, an increase of 5.5 percent. Shipments from Ontario quarries total 2.4 million tons, an increase equal to about four boatloads in mid-sized lakers.

Maritime Editorial