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White House Works to Ease Supply Chain Holiday Bottlenecks

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The White House and President Joe Biden recently launched an initiative to try to help ease supply chain bottlenecks that many are worried will negatively impact the holiday shopping season. Heads of unions, businesses, and ports got together with the President to try to quickly fix the current backlog at ports in the United States, mainly in Los Angeles and Long Beach.

According to new data, there is about 500,000 containers on cargo ships stuck at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, waiting to be offloaded. The President and heads of various organizations have agreed to try to make the supply chains around the nation operate faster, especially before the holiday season officially begins. 

Worldwide, supply chain issues have created major issues for businesses and consumers alike. Many shipments have slowed down or been caught in the clogs at the ports around the nation, causing many store shelves to be empty of much-desired products. Many analysts have already sounded the alarm about how the holiday season may go. While many items will be available, there won’t be a lot of items in stock for many businesses. So, once a product sells out, there may be no quick way to replace it. This may affect consumers when it comes to highly desired products and toys in the holiday season.

The global supply chain issues the world now faces were mainly driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. When the pandemic began — and even months after the fact — many countries faced worker shortages that impacted how business at ports and facilities was able to run. This shortage of workers was then met by a huge surge in consumer demand for goods, which caused the supply chain issues we now have. Businesses and ports are attempting to still meet this surge in demand, even though this hasn’t necessarily happened yet. 

Many economists are anticipating a good holiday season for businesses and the United States economy. For the past few weeks, signs have pointed to the fact that the economy is slowing down, possibly because of the Delta variant of COVID-19, which has caused cases to surge around the nation and consumer confidence to subsequently fall. However, things may become positive, as cases have slowed down in the past few weeks.

Economists are optimistic that the holiday season will be huge. However, the global supply chain issues could hamper sales during the season. If stock for businesses in the United States is low, then this could hurt both the business and the economy. Therefore, trying to clear the clogged ports now would greatly benefit businesses and the United States economy.

Already, the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach have decided to step up their operations round the clock. Walmart, as well as other major retailers, have also stated that they will increase their round of clock operations, rather than just paying attention to peak hours of the day.

However, the supply chain has more problems that may need to be worked out that have nothing to do with the clogged ports. For example, there is a major shortage of workers in the nation — including warehouse workers and truck drivers. If these positions are not filled in time for the holiday season, then this could also hurt businesses and the economy.

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