The US-China trade war slammed import volumes sufficiently enough in 2019 that imports from Asia experienced their first year-on-year drop since the 2009 global recession.
Expect the sale or spin-off of some business to make XPO more a “pure-play” LTL trucking company — smaller, but more focused on US shippers and better positioned to increase shareholder value.
Ag exporters are pleased by Wednesday’s signing of the US-China “Phase One” trade agreement, but the immediate impact on export volumes in the westbound trans-Pacific is unknown because the deal lacks specific details on commodity codes and tariff levels, they say.
Factories in China close for the lunar new year holidays that begin on Jan. 25, and the high spot rates enjoyed by carriers on the trade are beginning to fall.
The fleet-to-orderbook ratio is at its lowest in nearly a decade as carriers maintain a tight grip on capacity, aided by scrubber retrofitting and scrapping.