Eastbound trans-Pacific rates continued to drop this week, slipping 0.7 percent to $2,178 per loaded 40-foot container, according to the Drewry Hong Kong-Los Angeles Container Rate Benchmark.
The figure released Tuesday was the seventh consecutive weekly decline. The index has lost nearly 18 percent of its value since mid-October when it stood at $2,649 per 40-foot container, Drewry data shows.
The level this week is still 51.7 percent higher than at this time last year, reflecting gains from a series of successful rate increases in January, March, April, June and August. The market is closely watching the upcoming date of Dec. 15 when carriers in the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement plan to implement a $400 per 40-foot container rate increase on shipments to the U.S. West Coast. The increase was originally set to take effect on Dec. 1 but was postponed because of recent market weakness.
Other indices reflect recent eastbound trans-Pacific weakness as well. According to the SCFI Shanghai to West Coast sub-index, U.S. West Coast rates fell 6.1 percent last week to $2,089 per FEU. West Coast rates in the SCFI have fallen 23 percent since late September.