Container volume at Neptune Orient Lines, parent of APL, declined 18.5 percent in the first six weeks of 2011 compared to the last period of 2010 but the ocean carrier saw average revenue per box grow slightly in a sign of pricing strength in shipping markets.
APL carried 321, 600 40-foot equivalent units of container during the period, compared to 307,400 FEUs a year earlier.
Average revenue per 40-foot container reached $2,654 in the first six weeks of the year, $7 better than the December reporting period. It was the first time NOL’s measure of yield has grown sequentially in six months, dating back to the peak shipping period of 2010.
By The Numbers: NOL's APL Container Operations
The average revenue per FEU was also up 10 percent over the same reporting period a year ago.
That came as NOL and its APL unit saw a normal seasonal decline that also included the drop off in shipping from the Chinese New Year holiday.
Container volume still was up 5 percent over the same reporting period a year ago.
NOL said the volume growth came mainly from the Asia-Europe and intra-Asia markets.
Peter T. Leach contributed reporting to this article.