International air cargo traffic declined 3.8 percent in November from a year ago, the eighth straight monthly decline amid a faltering global economy and weakening demand in the Asia-Pacific region, the International Air Transport Association said.
However, traffic was 1.1 percent higher than in October and domestic markets were up 2 percent year-over-year in November, according to IATA.
International load factors are down 6 percentage points from their mid-2010 peak to 51.6 percent. Although carriers have reduced freighter capacity in line with lower demand belly cargo capacity continues to rise as airlines boost passenger aircraft fleets.
Freight volume has shrunk 4 percent since January, IATA said in its latest monthly report.
Asia-Pacific business was hardest hit with November traffic down 6.4 percent from a year ago. U.S. and European demand for Asian manufactured goods has declined as retailers in particular have kept inventories at lean levels.
European traffic dropped 4.6 percent year-over-year in November, reflecting continued uncertainty over the euro zone sovereign debt crisis.
U.S. airlines bucked the downtrend with cargo traffic growing 0.2 percent from November 2010.
Middle East and South American airlines were the strong performers, with cargo traffic increasing 4.6 percent and 4 percent, respectively.