A $1,000 increase is announced for 40-foot containers moving from Asia to the U.S.
Mediterranean Shipping Co. said Friday that it is planning to implement a substantial general rate increase (GRI) on Aug. 1 on cargo moving from Asia to the United States, including Puerto Rico.
It said the GRI will be $800 for 20-foot containers and $1,000 for 40-foot containers, $1,125 for 40-foot high cube containers and $1,266 for 45-foot containers.
The increase comes amid conflicting reports on how spot rates have moved in the past week.
Freightos said as of Monday, China-U.S. West Coast prices were $1,678 per FEU, up 21% in one week while China-U.S. East Coast prices were up $2,827 per FEU, up 7% in the last week.
“Importers front-loading orders to beat another possible trade tariff helped carriers increase the price of containers bound for the West Coast by $291, $191 for the East Coast,” said Eytan Buchman, the chief marketing officer at Freightos. “President Trump just deferred the tariff’s implementation. That won’t immediately dampen demand as it will take weeks before the bulk of front-loaded orders get finished and shipped.
“Besides, with importers getting caught out the last time a tariff came off deferral, some front-loading may continue. If carriers are lucky, this increased demand might continue up until peak season,” Buchman said.
Freightos said with prices already seasonally high and fewer blank sailings, prices for shipments from China to the East Coast rose less than they did from China to the West Coast.
“Shipping costs through the Panama Canal were set to rise because of draft restrictions in the canal,” said Freightos, but it noted that “recent rain postponed further draft reduction until July 16 at the earliest.”
The Shanghai Shipping Exchange, which tracks outbound rates from Shanghai to different regions of the world in its Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI), estimated the spot rate for moving a 40-foot container from Shanghai to the U.S. West Coast at $1,649 on Friday, down $71 from June 28. To the U.S. East Coast, the rate from Shanghai was $2,764 per FEU on Friday, down $24 from the prior week.
In contrast, while Drewry’s World Container Index (WCI) gave a similar spot rate estimate of $1,649 per FEU for shipments moving from Shanghai to Los Angeles on Thursday, it said that represented a 12% increase. From Shanghai to New York, it estimated the rate at $2,709, up 10% in the last week.
Globally, the SCFI, which is an index weighted by volume that is based on spot rate estimates for cargo moving to 13 regions globally, was 810.91 on July, down 18.8 points or 2.3% from 829.70 the week before.
The Drewry WCI, based on eight major routes including backhauls (from the U.S. or Europe to Asia, for example), was $1,372 per FEU, up 1.4%.
On June 21, APL announced peak season surcharges of $850 for 20-foot containers and $1,000 for 40-foot containers originating in Asia (except Japan), Australia, New Zealand, East Africa, Middle East, and West Asia destined for the U.S. (except Guam, Hawaii, Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands) and Canada.