For the sixth month in succession, the Stifel Logistics Confidence Index declined. This trend resulted in the November Index score falling to the lowest registered for three years. The monthly decline registered in airfreight was more moderate than that witnessed in sea freight; the former was down by 0.4 points to 48.9, whilst the latter dropped 2.8 points, amounting to 46.1.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for global airfreight markets, showing a modest 1.6 percent rise in volumes in March compared to a year ago, measured in freight tonne kilometers.
In 2014, losses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa as a result of cargo theft totaled $80m, according to the Transported Asset Protection Association. TAPA reported an average of three major cargo crimes occurred each day in 2014, targeting high-value, easy-to-steal goods in the supply chain, with an average loss of $221,000 each day.
In early March, a loaded 747-400 freighter, operated by Atlas Air on behalf of forwarding firm Panalpina, pushed back from the gate in Huntsville, Alabama, and took off at sunset, full of machine parts from the American Midwest. It was the inaugural flight of Panalpina's twice-weekly "Brazil Wings" main-deck service from Huntsville to São Paulo, Brazil. On its return journey to Huntsville from Viracopos International Airport, the freighter flew on to Hong Kong International, with a load of perishable goods from Brazil and other South American markets. The total transit time for the new VCP-HSV-HKA route was less than 40 hours – pretty impressive for a journey of more than 11,300 nautical miles.
The International Air Transport Association released full-year air cargo data for 2014 showing 4.5 percent demand growth compared to 2013 measured by freight tonne kilometers, a significant acceleration from the 1.4 percent recorded in 2013 over 2012.
The Stifel Logistics Confidence Index for July appears to mirror an uncertain economic environment. Since February of this year, the overall Index has increased one month and then declined the next reaching its high so far this year in May at 57.9. For the current month, the index is up 0.9 points over June to 56.1.
Airfreight markets in March were up 5.9 percent compared to a year ago and capacity grew 3.4 percent, according to the International Air Transport Association. While this marks a significant improvement in volumes compared to March 2013, much of the growth took place in the final quarter of 2013 (over and above the usual year-end volume growth). Since the beginning of the year, air cargo volumes have been basically flat. This plateau in volumes is consistent with the recent pause in improvements to business confidence and world trade.