The cost of shipping goods from Asia to the US has soared in the past month as American companies seek to restock depleted inventories ahead of the holiday season and prepare for the pandemic to worsen over the winter, reported the Financial Times.
Long term rates to the US west coast jumped by 12.7% over the weekend following a 37.2% increase on October 1 — the biggest overnight jump since 2015, according to international shipping association Bimco. Prices now stand 63.4% higher than on the same day in 2019, said the FT.
The sharp rise in rates is being driven by high demand for a wide range of Asian-manufactured goods in the US, where inventories are now at their lowest levels since 1990 as a result of shocks to supply chains earlier in the year according to David Kerstens, an analyst at Jefferies.
“Chinese production was virtually out of service during the spring and demand in the US for ecommerce in particular has gone up since then as people spend less on services because of the pandemic,” he said.