Executive Briefings

Drop in Spot Rates on East-West Ocean Routes Lowest in Five Years

The World Container Index's composite index, an average of spot freight rates on 11 global East-West routes connecting Asia, Europe and the U.S., reached a record low of $701 per 40-foot container recently.

This was the lowest reading since the World Container Index starting tracking weekly trans-Atlantic, trans-Pacific and Asia-Europe rates in June 2011.

Also today, the index rate assessments for the Shanghai-Rotterdam and the Shanghai-Genoa routes fell to all-time lows of $354 and $341 per 40-foot box, respectively, while the latest Shanghai-Los Angeles rate of $878 per 40-footer was marginally higher than the record low for that route.

“The World Container Index’s composite index is now 60 percent lower than the average of the past five years and has decreased by 62 percent in the past year,” said Richard Heath, director of WCI.

Philip Damas, director at Drewry, which jointly owns WCI alongside Cleartrade Exchange, said: “Rate reductions are spreading across all routes, as the shipping market continues to soften. This is good news for shippers’ cost budgets, as the latest average index value of $701 per 40 foot represents an expense of less than 10 cents per km and makes products competitive even in remote markets.”

The World Container Index is the only weekly container pricing index which is independent of carriers and government authorities.

Source: Drewry

This was the lowest reading since the World Container Index starting tracking weekly trans-Atlantic, trans-Pacific and Asia-Europe rates in June 2011.

Also today, the index rate assessments for the Shanghai-Rotterdam and the Shanghai-Genoa routes fell to all-time lows of $354 and $341 per 40-foot box, respectively, while the latest Shanghai-Los Angeles rate of $878 per 40-footer was marginally higher than the record low for that route.

“The World Container Index’s composite index is now 60 percent lower than the average of the past five years and has decreased by 62 percent in the past year,” said Richard Heath, director of WCI.

Philip Damas, director at Drewry, which jointly owns WCI alongside Cleartrade Exchange, said: “Rate reductions are spreading across all routes, as the shipping market continues to soften. This is good news for shippers’ cost budgets, as the latest average index value of $701 per 40 foot represents an expense of less than 10 cents per km and makes products competitive even in remote markets.”

The World Container Index is the only weekly container pricing index which is independent of carriers and government authorities.

Source: Drewry