Container shipping rates are slowly dropping
Container shipping rates from China fell last week across all major destinations, according to Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI).
With the exception of routes to the ports of the Mediterranean Sea, the decrease in the main SCFI sub-indices was approximately 2%: the rate index for ports in Northern Europe is at $ 734 per 1 TEU, for ports on the west and east coasts are $ 1.63 thousand and $ 2.72 thousand for 40 foot container respectively. Rates on routes to Southern Europe fell by half a percent, to $ 859 per 1 TEU.
Over the past 1.5 months since the beginning of March, rates on routes to Europe have decreased by 9% to the ports of the North and by 7% to the ports of the Mediterranean Sea. Rates on the US East Coast are almost at the level of the end of February, and on the West – they increased by 17%.
Last week, Danish SeaIntelligence analyst warned of a high probability of falling rates as the demand for container traffic drops sharply. The Sea-Intelligence forecast is based on the assumption that the 2008–2009 crisis scenario will repeat. Then the volume of the global container shipping market fell by 10%, and rates fell by about the same amount.
If carriers fail to prevent this, their combined losses could reach a staggering $ 23 billion this year.