Customs and Border Patrol reported 132,887 apprehensions at the US southwest border during the month of May. This was 33,583 (+34%) higher than the previous month and 3.3x the level of last year, as well as 9.2x the level of 2017.
This was the highest for the month of May since 2000 and the highest for any calendar month since March 2006.
We had expected a major surge heading into the summer months, but this was above our worst case scenario.
Forecasting remains a challenge, but our current estimates, allowing for seasonal fluctuations, projects 1,072,000 apprehensions at the southwest border for calendar year 2019. This would be the highest full year since 2005.
No doubt President Trump had a sense of these numbers a few days ago, hence the Mexico tariff initiative. Notwithstanding, we expect a similarly bad June.