The global Xeneta Shipping Index by Compass (XSI® - C) increased over 10 percent in June to 421.96 points.

"The index has now set a new all-time high for four consecutive months. Despite a degree of macro-economic uncertainty clouding the horizon, all major trades saw prices moving up, with some corridors showing significant gains," according to the latest update from Xeneta.

XSI - C is based on daily ocean container rates for a 40' container (FEU). Rates are updated daily with a two-day lag.

Over the last 18 months, the index has recorded just two monthly declines, highlighting how increases have been sustained since the end of 2020, the report said. Year-on-year, the benchmark has appreciated 170 percent and is up 71 percent since the end of 2021.

"Rates developments that would have been front-page news a few years ago are in danger of becoming the norm in a market environment that is historically hot," says Patrik Berglund, CEO, Xeneta. "After last month's colossal rise, we see another hike of 10 percent, pushing cargo owners to the limits."

Berglund points to falling spot rates – that may increasingly tempt shippers away from traditional contracts – in addition to looming industrial action in ports (in Europe and, potentially, the U.S.) that could damage schedule reliability.

Global schedule reliability seems to follow the trend seen in 2021 with fluctuations in a small range at a slightly lower base, according to the latest Global Liner Performance (GLP) update from Sea-Intelligence.

The schedule reliability improved by 2.1 percentage points M/M to 36.4 percent in May 2022 but down Y/Y by -2.3 percentage points. This means that the 2022 score has been slightly below the 2021 level in each of the first five months, Sea-Intelligence says in its report.

"We anticipate that shippers will revert to being risk-averse, as much as possible. Top of mind for them will be which trades they will procure on the spot market and which on the contract market and their duration," says Xeneta.

Shippers will certainly be careful to get their cargo where it needs to be and when it needs to be there at the right price, it added.

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