Huge Barge Logjam On Mississippi Eases; Vessel Shipping Prices Hyperinflate

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by Tyler Durden
Tuesday, Oct 11, 2022 - 12:00 AM

A massive logjam of more than 2,000 barges at various parts of the Mississippi River is being cleared Monday morning. 

Southbound vessel traffic resumed early morning on the Mississippi River near Stack Island, an island located in Issaquena County, Mississippi after northbound traffic was cleared Sunday, Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. wrote in a note. 

"We were able to completely clear the Northbound queue," ADM said. 

ADM added that once all the southbound congestion is resolved, the Coast Guard will allow one-way traffic moving forward. 

Bloomberg also reported two choke points: one near Stack Island and the other near Memphis, Tennessee, were reopening after being closed last week due to the lack of rainfall which caused the grounding of barges, blocking parts of the waterway. 

Source: Bloomberg 

Last week, we detailed the chaos unfolding on the crucial US water artery for the Midwest economy in "Dangerously Low" Mississippi River Level May Spark Transport Chaos For Farm Goods During Harvest and Barges Grounded By "Near-Historic" Low Water Halt Mississippi River Traffic

The timing of the closure comes as barges transport harvested corn, soybeans, wheat, and other farm goods from Midwest farms to major export terminals in the Gulf of Mexico. 

Remember, the cause of the weather chaos across the US could be due to a weather phenomenon known as La Nina. Meanwhile, Bloomberg continues to point to "climate change." 

Even though congestion begins to ease, barge prices per ton to ship farm goods have hyperinflated from $12 a ton in June to $90 last week. 

Low water levels reduce the amount of weight a barge can haul, which increases demand for more barges. This is one inflation story the Federal Reserve can't solve.