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Top iron ore port ships half billion tons as bears call time

Iron ore cargoes from the world's largest bulk export terminal – Port Hedland in Australia – jumped to an all-time high last year at a time of bearish forecasts for the commodity.

Iron ore cargoes from Australia’s Port Hedland, the world’s biggest bulk export terminal, jumped to an all-time high of almost half a billion metric tons last year, offering fresh evidence of burgeoning global supply at a time when bearish forecasts for the commodity are stacking up.

Exports from the port, which handles material for BHP Billiton Ltd., Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. and Roy Hill Holdings Pty, climbed 5 percent to 46.1 million tons in December to set a monthly record, according to Pilbara Ports Authority figures on Tuesday. For all of last year, shipments were 497 million tons, up from 479 million in 2016, according to Bloomberg calculations.

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