Executive Briefings

Shipping Rates on Asia-to-Northern Europe Trade Lanes Continue Their Fall in May

The average container freight rates from Asia to North Europe continues to drop, to $2,352 per 40-foot container and to $1,359 per 20-foot, as of tracking on May 24, according to Xeneta, a sea freight price comparison service. Due to overcapacity and various types of economic turmoil in the market, the market index for 40-foot containers has taken a massive dip with it being down 52 percent from May 2012.

Xeneta's global market index for sea freight has seen a consistent downward slope the past months since the general rate increase was released in March and April. The fall in ocean rates could be seen across several popular trade lanes in Asia to North Europe. For the Shanghai-to-Rotterdam trade route, average shipping prices for containerized freight was as low as $1,148 per 20-foot container and $1,978 per 40-foot. This is contradictory to what Drewry's market index proclaims, saying that the average per 40-foot in the same trade lane is at $1,335. Drewry's index is based on the rates collected from several freight sellers, whereas Xeneta collects actual data from a large member base of both freight buyers and sellers.

"Even though the market is dropping, there are still freight buyers that cannot keep up with the rapid fluctuations in the market, resulting in them overpaying on their routes. Xeneta reports that one of the best-in-class performers have a price under $1,200 per 40-foot from Shanghai to Rotterdam," says Xeneta CEO Patrik Berglund. "That is why it's so incredibly important to benchmark your own prices against the market."

Source: Xeneta

Xeneta's global market index for sea freight has seen a consistent downward slope the past months since the general rate increase was released in March and April. The fall in ocean rates could be seen across several popular trade lanes in Asia to North Europe. For the Shanghai-to-Rotterdam trade route, average shipping prices for containerized freight was as low as $1,148 per 20-foot container and $1,978 per 40-foot. This is contradictory to what Drewry's market index proclaims, saying that the average per 40-foot in the same trade lane is at $1,335. Drewry's index is based on the rates collected from several freight sellers, whereas Xeneta collects actual data from a large member base of both freight buyers and sellers.

"Even though the market is dropping, there are still freight buyers that cannot keep up with the rapid fluctuations in the market, resulting in them overpaying on their routes. Xeneta reports that one of the best-in-class performers have a price under $1,200 per 40-foot from Shanghai to Rotterdam," says Xeneta CEO Patrik Berglund. "That is why it's so incredibly important to benchmark your own prices against the market."

Source: Xeneta