Cargo Spot Rates Drop Across All Major Trade Lanes

Earlier this week, spot rates dropped across all major trade lanes, despite stable U.S. trade due to a healthy peak season and the carrier’s September 1st general rate increase (GRI). Asia to northern Europe saw rates drop by 6.6 percent this week, down $74 to $1,055 per 20-foot container (TEU). The spot rate is still 9.2 percent higher than the same week of 2013. Asia to Mediterranean dipped 8.7 percent ($130) to $1,357-per TEU. However, this week’s rate was 34.9 percent higher than the same week in 2013.

U.S. West Coast and East Coast spot rates also took a tumble despite GRIs imposed by carriers on September 1st. Hong Kong to Los Angeles benchmark spot rate dropped 8.8 percent this week to $2,075 per 40-foot container (FEU). While that rate is 10 percent higher year-over-year, the $200-per-FEU loss eliminated all of the $300 gained by trans-Pacific carriers after the $600-per-FEU GRI earlier this month. East Coast spot rates saw the smallest decrease, lowering 2.4 percent to $4,524 per FEU. This is largely due to strong peak season volumes partially from diverted West Coast traffic, and the September GRI of $292 per FEU. This week’s spot rate registered at $4,524 per FEU, 2.4 percent lower than the previous week. The rate is 36 percent higher than the same week of 2013.