The global Xeneta Shipping Index (XSI) posted its biggest ever month-on-month drop on record in January 2023 when it fell 13.3% from December, down to 364.15 points, making it the fifth month in a row of falling prices.

"With little sign of change ahead, this will be a challenging year for the carriers," says the latest update from Xeneta.

"Global demand has fallen away, congestion has eased, equipment is available, and the macro-economic and geopolitical situations are, to say the least, complex," says Patrik Berglund, CEO, Xeneta. "As a result of those market fundamentals, spot prices have collapsed, spiralling downwards since late summer 2022. However, the carriers have managed to protect long-term rates from the worst impacts until now."

With the dawn of 2023, many of the contracts negotiated last year have expired, he added. "Shippers, well aware of market dynamics turning in their favour, have reacted, pushing carriers for major rate reductions. What we're seeing now is the effect of that as new contracts enter validity. And, for the carriers, worse is set to come."

XSI - U.S. imports/exports
The XSI for the U.S. imports fell 15.8% from December - the fastest m-o-m decline of the sub-index on record and the fourth month in a row in which it has declined. The XSI for U.S. exports was one of the two sub-indices that didn't register a record-high drop. It fell only marginally (1.3 percent) from December.

XSI - Europe imports/exports
The XSI for European imports fell to 353.3 points in January, a 9.6 percent drop from December. Compared to the start of 2022, the XSI is still up by 40.9 percent. The XSI for exports fell by 5.2 percent.

XSI - Far East imports/exports
The XSI for exports out of the Far East had the largest m-o-m drop, falling by 18.1 percent in January. Compared to a year ago, it is up by 41 percent.

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