Record cargo volumes shipped in May
The Pilbara Ports Authority released its May figures which showed more than 38 million tonnes of iron ore cargo shipped in the month.
This was a 7.4 per cent increase on the April figure, and the highest monthly result ever reported from the Pilbara.
This ramp up comes after an apparent capping of iron ore supply over the past year, even if at previously unthinkably high levels.
As the above chart shows an incredibly 85 per cent of that cargo was shipped to China and Taiwan.
Korea and Japan accounted for most of the remainder at 7 per cent and 6 per cent respectively.
The good news is that the iron ore spot price has rebounded from below US$48/tonne to well above US$64/tonne, for now at least.
This is one of the reasons that next month's International Trade figures should in theory be much better than last month's stinker of a result.
However, the boost may be short term in nature if the increase in supply of cargo shipped once again puts downward pressure on the commodity price.
As noted here previously, a materially lower Aussie dollar would help.