CONTAINER freight rates continued on their upwards trajectory in the first week of August following capacity reductions in the major east-west trade lanes.
The Shanghai Shipping Exchange's Shanghai Containerised Freight Index (SCFI), which aggregates spot rates on 13 different outbound trades from Shanghai, rose by 3.1 per cent on a sequential basis last week after an 8.8 per cent increase the previous week.
Compared to the index's 897.28 reading as of August 4 2017, however, the reading of 890.52 this August 3 was 0.8 per cent lower, reported American Shipper.
On an individual trade lane basis, spot rates as measured by the SCFI from Shanghai to Europe rose just one per cent last week to $935 per TEU compared with the previous week, while rates from Shanghai to the Mediterranean fell 1.3 per cent to $881 per TEU.
Transpacific rates performed better, with rates from Shanghai to the US west coast rising 10.5 per cent to $2,074 per FEU, while rates to the US east coast were up 8.8 per cent to $3,099 per FEU.
Drewry's World Container Index (WCI) grew even more than the SCFI, surging 13.5 per cent from the previous week and 6.6 per cent year on year to $1,697 per FEU.
Year on year growth in the WCI has been dragged down in recent weeks by large declines in rates for backhaul Asia-Europe and transpacific routes.
According to Drewry, westbound rates from Shanghai to Rotterdam rose eight per cent on a sequential basis to $1,784 per FEU in the first week of August but were down one per cent year on year. By comparison, eastbound pricing from Rotterdam back to Shanghai fell two per cent sequentially and 35 per cent year on year to $817 per FEU as of August 3.
Spot rates from Shanghai to Genoa were up four per cent from the previous week but down three per cent year on year to $1,677 per FEU.
In the transpacific, eastbound WCI rates from Shanghai to Los Angeles jumped 30 per cent to $2,151 per FEU, up 28 per cent year on year, while backhaul rates outbound from Los Angeles declined one per cent sequentially to $480 per FEU.
Rates to New York rose 18 per cent on a sequential basis and 19 per cent year on year to $3,211 per FEU.
Transatlantic rates were up five per cent from the previous week and 14 per cent year on year to $1,965 per FEU.