Great Lakes iron ore trade up nearly 2 percent, limestone trade steady in August
Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 6.4 million tons in August, an increase of 1.8 percent compared to a year ago. Shipments outperformed the month’s five-year average by nearly 13 percent.
Year-to-date, the iron ore trade stands at 33 million tons, a decrease of 2.4 percent compared to the same point in 2017. The gap has been steadily decreasing over the course of the shipping season. At the end of April, iron ore shipments were down nearly 14 percent.
Through August, iron shipments are 7.2 percent ahead of the five-year average for the first eight months of the year.
Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3,941,085 tons in August, a near carbon copy of both a year ago and July of this year. Limestone cargoes also bettered the month’s five-year average by 5.8 percent.
Loadings from U.S. quarries totaled 3.248 million tons, a decrease 3.3 percent, or 110,000 tons, compared to a year ago. Shipments from Canadian quarries totaled 693,003 tons, an increase of 9.4 percent or roughly three loads in a mid-sized laker.
Year-to-date, the Lakes limestone trade stands at 17.2 million tons, an increase of 3.5 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings from Michigan and Ohio quarries total 14.1 million tons, an increase of 3.3 percent. Shipments from Ontario quarries total 3.1 million tons, an increase 4.5 percent.