The latest S&P Global Monday release on Platts Americas Container Freight shows that non-Asian export cargo bound for the East Coast of South America saw the greatest freight rate decline, dropping 51.9%, or US$ 2,700, throughout the week, to settle at US$ 2,500/FEU.
This is the largest drop in the route’s rate since early September and the first time East Coast South American import rates were below Atlantic import rates since July. Market sources said the drop can be attributed to soft demand, excess inventory, and ongoing unrest.
Import freight rates into the Pacific coast of South America also fell 11.6% to rest at US$ 3,000/FEU. A freight forwarding source in Chile attributed the decline to recently lowered demand, combined with a simultaneous increase in capacity.
Likewise import rates from North America to the West Coast slowed their slide during the week ending Nov. 11. After many carriers decreased capacity in late October through early November, America’s container spot rates on the Pacific Coast seemed to stabilize slightly during the week.
According to Sea Intelligence, 34 additional blank sailings were announced for the Asia-to-West Coast North America route in late October through the first week of November. During that same time, only 16 blank sailings were announced for trans-Atlantic imports.
The capacity reduction tightened the supply for Pacific imports from North Asia, slowing the rate decrease that has plagued the trade since early July. Platts Container Rate 13—North Asia-to-West Coast North America—lost 3.4% to balance at US$1,400/FEU on the week, compared with a 12.1% previous dive.
During the same time, cargoes bound for the East Coast from North Asia saw a 12.5% reduction on the week to settle at US$4,200/FEU, a slightly larger drop than the previous week, which shifted the rate down by 9.4%.