After substantial adjustments in the early part of the week, the China's export container shipping market showed signs of stabilization this week. Rates on different routes were up or down, with the composite index slightly declining. It is expected that the future market performance will maintain a stable to good pattern. On December 16, the Shanghai Export Containerized Freight Index released by the Shanghai Shipping Exchange was 1,123.29 points, declining 1.3% compared to the previous period.
European Routes: According to data released by the European Economic Research Institute (ZEW), the ZEW economic sentiment index for the eurozone stood at -23.6 in December, a new high since February 2022, indicating an improved economic outlook The economic downward pressure eased as the inflation rate began to fall, together with the recent general stability in the European energy market, although the level of inflation continued to be at a high level. This week, the transport demand performed steadily and the supply-demand relationship was basically balanced. The transport market saw a rebounding trend and market rates rose slightly. On December 16, the market freight rate (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) for export from Shanghai port to European basic port was US$1,050/TEU, rising 0.3% compared with the previous period. Mediterranean Routes: The trend in this market kept pace with that of European routes, with rates continuing to move slightly upwards this week. On December 16, the market freight rate (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) from Shanghai port to Mediterranean basic port was US$1,851/TEU, rising 0.5% compared with the previous period.
North American Routes: The latest data released by the US Department of Commerce showed that US retail sales fell by 0.6% in November compared to the previous year, missing market expectations and the lowest rate of decline in 11 months. Consumers generally cut back significantly on spending despite entering the Thanksgiving-led holiday shopping season in the US in late November, which suggests a significant reduction in consumer spending behavior in a high inflationary environment. The economic outlook going forward was negative as the Federal Reserve continued to raise interest rates this week to keep inflation in check. During this week, the market rates extended the adjustment trend as the balance of supply and demand failed to improve due to the lack of further growth in transport demand. On December 16, the market freight rates (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) for exports from Shanghai port to the basic ports in the western and eastern US were US$1,423/FEU and US$3,169/FEU respectively, declining 0.5% and 3.7% respectively compared to the previous period.
Persian Gulf Routes: The market continued its adjustment trend as cargo volume performed unfavorably and lacked growth momentum, with a weak supply and demand situation. On December 16, the market freight rate (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) from Shanghai port to the basic port of Persian Gulf was US$1,153/TEU, declining 1.5% compared with that in the previous period.
Australia and New Zealand Routes: Local market demand for all types of materials was generally stable. The supply-demand relationship improved as some carriers took measures such as controlling capacity deployment. Spot market booking prices continued to rise slightly. On December 16, the market freight rate (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) for exports from Shanghai port to Australia and New Zealand basic port was US$738/TEU, rising 4.7% compared with the previous period.
South American Routes: Countries of destination suffered from weak economic fundamentals, high inflation levels and increased volatility in financial markets during successive interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve. As a result, the market rates continued to decline due to sluggish growth in transport demand and unsatisfactory supply-demand balance. On December 16, the market freight rate (ocean freight and ocean freight surcharge) for exports from Shanghai port to South American basic ports was US$1,649/TEU, a decline of 10.1% compared with that of the previous period.
Japan Routes: The transport market was stable, with a slight drop in market freight rates. On December 16, the freight index of China export to Japan routes was 1,091.22 points.