The Financial Times Confidential Research (FTCR) China Freight Index fell to a nine-month low in May, with the sector proving immune to signs of stabilisation in other parts of the economy and companies now pessimistic about the near-term outlook. Profits fell sharply as surging cost pressures were compounded by a faster drop in volumes and rates. The FTCR Freight Volume Index fell 2.5 points (pts) MoM to 41.2, below last April’s 43.8 and the lowest level for a non-holiday month since last August. The index has been below 50 – indicating contraction – for 18 straight months. Freight rates fell, costs rose and profits dropped in the past month.