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Idled Ships, Empty Containers. Ocean Shipping Faces Its Biggest Slump in Years.


LONG BEACH, Calif.—Global shipping executives are wrestling with plunging exports, falling freight rates and mounting suspense over whether the industry is headed for a price war. 

Traffic from China’s ports

has slowed significantly, empty containers are stacked six high and trucks with no cargo dot the highway leading to the major terminals. The world’s largest box-ship operator plans to return dozens of chartered vessels to their owners. 

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