SeaIntel: Shipowners unable to maintain high rates

The much-discussed discipline the container shipping companies seem to have found in 2012 is only partially true. While general rate increases are pushed through with strong discipline, the spot- and contract rates are now declining faster than at the height of the price war in 2011.

Photo: Hyundai Merchant Marine

The shipowners’ discipline in pushing general rate increases through is less pronounced when looking at the week-to-week changes in spot- and contract rates, as they are showing a rapidly declining trend, with rates now being reduced at a faster pace than at the height of the price war in 2011, writes SeaIntel. The result could be significantly reduced capacity.

“It is clear that the carriers’ discipline is very high as it pertains to their ability to push through rate increases – this is evidenced by the overall increase in rate levels. (…) However, the data also clearly show that the other element of discipline – the ability to maintain rates on a daily basis – has become entirely absent in the market. The rate erosion resulting from the lack of day-to-day discipline across the carriers is now even worse than during the price war in 2011,” writes SeaIntel.

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