Airfreight rates decline again in October

By Damian Brett

Image: Shutterstock

Airfreight rates continued to buck normal seasonal trends and declined again in October as the air cargo market remained subdued.

The market usually sees an increase in rates out of Asia between September and October as the industry continues to ramp up toward the peak season. However, that was not the case this year.

The latest figures from the Baltic Exchange Airfreight Index (BAI), which take into account spot and contract pricing paid by forwarders, show that prices from Hong Kong to North America declined in October to $6.74 per kg from $7.94 in September.

Rates on the route are also down 32.2% year on year.

Meanwhile, average rates from Hong Kong to Europe in October slid to $5.78 per kg from $6.09 per kg a month earlier.

Compared with last year, prices on the route are down 13.5%.

However, it should be noted that rates in October on both routes are still ahead of 2019 pre-Covid levels when forwarders were paying $3.49 per kg from Hong Kong to North America and $2.82 per kg to Europe.

The price declines come as the market outlook remains weak due to slower consumer spending caused by inflationary pressures, ongoing lockdowns and their impact on production levels and cargo capacity continues to recover as passenger flights – and therefore bellyhold capacity – are restarted.

Airfreight rates on key lanes continue gradual descent in September

China faces slow airfreight demand as Covid containment continues

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