December 5, 2012 4:00 PM, EST
Agreement Reached to End Strike at California Ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach

Clerical workers at the Southern California ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have agreed to end an eight-day strike that affected about $1 billion of trade a day, Bloomberg reported Wednesday.

Workers and management reached a tentative agreement on a new contract, according to a statement late Tuesday night by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. The agreement was reached after a federal mediator stepped in late Tuesday, Bloomberg said.

The two ports, which together handle about a third of U.S. container imports, closed 10 of 14 cargo terminals, stranding shipments as the year-end holidays approached, Bloomberg reported.

The strike cost the local economy “billions of dollars,” Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said in a statement.

The strike began last week when clerical workers at the Port of Los Angeles, who had been working without a contract for two-and-a-half years, walked off the job. The work stoppage then spread to the neighboring Port of Long Beach.

The shutdown left 15 ships sitting at piers waiting to be unloaded earlier this week and another 11 offshore, Bloomberg reported. Some cargo had been diverted to Canada, Mexico and other U.S. ports.