ASIA-EUR0PE spot rates from the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index (SCFI) fell 44 per cent last week to US$975 per TEU, well below the $1,000 break even point as transpacific rates slipped 6.6 per cent to $1,930 per FEU.
Only Asia-US east coast spot rates were up - by $2 - to $4,500 per FEU week to week, the best performance of all east-west trade lanes, rising 40 per cent up year on year.
Mid-December's $1,000 general rate increase only managed to eke a $434 increase in the FEU rate, and lost half that in the past three weeks.
All await the fate of January 15's $1,000 per FEU levy which is split into a $600 rate increase and a $400 peak period surcharge ahead of the February 19 Chinese New Year factory shutdown that occasions a pre-holiday cargo rush.
Asia-Mediterranean prices also fell, dropping 5.3 per cent to $1,174 per TEU, 34 per cent year-on-year decline.
This year, says Newark's Journal of Commerce, carriers in the Transpacific Stabilisation Agreement (TSA ) have a new strategy. "They plan to de-emphasise monthly GRIs and instead recommend that minimum rates be at least $2,000 per FEU to the west coast and $3,500 to the east coast from all north Asia ports," said the report.