International air freight rates out of Asia edged up to the highest point in six months in April, according to the Drewry Air Freight Price Index, which showed average pricing growing 5.7 percent from the month before.
The index prepared by Drewry Shipping Consultants of London reached 112.9, the top level so far this year and highest since the measure of air freight pricing out of Shanghai was at 118.7 in November.
The second straight month-to-month gain left the Drewry rate index 15.1 percent ahead of the low point reached in February.
But the index also was off 16 percent in April compared to the same month a year ago, the sixth straight year-over-year decline in an expedited shipping market that is seeing capacity increasing steadily while demand has flattened out.
The Association of Asia-Pacific Airlines says freight traffic for the region’s airlines fell 2 percent in April and was down 0.1 percent in the first four months of the year. But freight capacity was up 2.1 percent in April and an average of 4.9 percent in the full year through April.
The comparisons this spring, including the Drewry price index, follow what air cargo industry executives say was an unusually strong upturn in early 2010.