HAMBURG : The supply chain industryis hopeful of a better peak season this year and expects freight demand recovery in the Q2 of 2023, according to the recently published monthly container market forecaster for April by the online logistics platform, Container xChange.
The container price sentiment index (xCPSI), a sentiment analysis tool by Container xChange that concurrently surveys supply chain professionals on their short-term price expectations, continued to show negative readingsuntil mid-March. But the results consistently turned positive,reaching an all-time high at the beginning of April, when the index started showing confidence building for the coming quarter.
While the industry sentiment is gradually turning positive, there have been many headwinds in the shipping sector in Q1.
“The global container logistic ecosystem is like a spider’s web. One disruption does not linearly impact the knot. Instead, every disruption reverberates across the web—sometimesin unexpecteddirections. The increase in FED rates, the banking sector crisis, the strikes might seem concentrated in one region, but they have their impact across all tradelanes .” shared Christian Roeloffs, cofounder and CEO, of Container xChange as he commented upon the current state of the container shipping industry.
Looking back at the first quarter of 2023
Overall, in the first quarter of 2023, North America registered the biggest decline in average prices for 20 ft dry cargo containers. After North America, the Middle East and ISC region witnessed the second biggest drop in container prices, followed by Southeast Asia.
Commenting on the outlook for the rest of the year, Christian Roeloffs shared further, “Despite avoiding a global financial and economic recession for now, the shipping industry is experiencing a freight recession due to the postponement of inventory replenishment cycles by retailers who overstocked. As we look ahead, we anticipate a subdued rebound in demand as retailers begin to deplete their excess stock in the coming months, leading up to the peak season.”
A survey was conducted recently (April 2023) with close to 664 supply chain professionals by Container xChange and asked how they perceived the peak season to develop this year in 2023 as compared to the last year.