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  • Writer's pictureTeam CargoTalk

Global air cargo market may remain unstable till October’

The global air cargo market may have to ‘hang on until October’ for signs of recovery after a flood of summer belly hold capacity on major lanes and a -4 per cent drop in demand in April indicated a challenging 4-5 months ahead, according to CLIVE Data Services, part of Xeneta. Airfreight spots rates dropped -41 per cent versus April 2022 as a 7 per cent rise in cargo capacity resulted in lower load factors and a 14th consecutive month of falling volumes year-over-year. CLIVE’s ‘dynamic load factor, measuring global volume and weight perspectives of cargo flown and capacity available, dropped -5 per cent points versus 2022 to 57 per cent in April, continuing a more than year-long decline. Summer capacity had its traditionally profound impact on the air cargo market from Europe to North America, with capacity up 26 per cent in comparison to March 2023. Data showed a 10 per cent points decrease in load factor across the North Atlantic to 57 per cent last month, compared to the 67 per cent level recorded to major North American airports in March. This pushed the general airfreight spot rate on this westbound lane down to US$2.29 for April. While air cargo market performance in April recorded a level of seasonality expected for the time of year, volumes were impacted due to Easter, Eid, Pesach, and Ramadan public holidays all coming together so closely and this did not disguise the dwindling market conditions, says Niall van de Wouw, Chief Airfreight Officer, Xeneta.

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