Container ship overcapacity in the Asia/Europe trade saw cargo spot rates for westbound headhaul liftings hit another all-time low today.
According to the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index (SCFI), shipments on the Shanghai/North Europe route were this week quoted at just USD342 per teu in the spot market – a drop of USD102 or 23% from last week.
“The influx of new large ships and modest cargo demand growth have taken their toll,” commented Alphaliner, the container research division of Paris shipbroker Barry Rogliano Salles, earlier this week.
For cargo liftings ex Shanghai to Mediterranean main ports, the SCFI benchmark spot rate fell by almost 20% to USD466 per teu. Trades to North America fared a little better, with the Shanghai/US West Coast route posting an increase in average spot freights by 8% to USD1,526 per feu (40 ft) and shipments to the US East Coast getting fixed 2.4% higher at USD3,216 per feu.
The trades from the Far East to the Persian Gulf, Australia/New Zealand and to the East Coast of South America recorded another decline in rates, while most other secondary routes ex Shanghai performed were more stable.