Economy Watch

Economy news, data, and analysis with a focus on how changing economic trends can impact the shipping and transportation industries. Our focus on world economy news looks at economic growth and challenges around the world from the United States and China to the United Kingdom and South Africa.

Commentary

The wind is at the intermodal sector’s back in the North American markets, but there is one headwind that, and as of now, the scope and ultimate impact is unknown. 

News & Analysis

22 Apr 2019
US containerized imports from Asia dropped 0.5 percent year over year in the first quarter of 2019, after rising 15.5 percent in the fourth quarter, according to the PIERS data, a sister product of JOC.com within IHS Markit
19 Apr 2019
The World Trade Organization has downgraded its 2019 outlook for world trade growth to 2.6 percent from a 3 percent clip in 2018, and global manufacturing is weakening.
18 Apr 2019
Chainalytics sees contract truckload rates turning ‘negative’ year over year as oversupply hits softer US freight demand.
04 Apr 2019
With cross-border freight already delayed and logistics costs rising, businesses must plan for a potential closure of the US-Mexico border threatened by President Trump.
04 Mar 2019
IHS Markit Chief Economist Nariman Behravesh tells TPM 2019 slowing global economic growth puts the odds of a recession at 3-to-1, with a likelihood of a worldwide recession in 2020 at 50-50.
01 Feb 2019
The US economy won't run off the road this year, but keep an eye on trade, tariffs, and 2020, economists say at SMC3's Jump Start 2019 event.
Knight-Swift Transportation.
17 Jan 2019
Knight-Swift projects higher fourth-quarter, first-quarter earnings, but analysts are not doing the same for 2019 truckload pricing forecasts.
Port of Montreal.
10 Jan 2019
The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, which took effect Dec. 30, will contain 495 million consumers.
Port of Los Angeles.
08 Jan 2019
"With the holiday season behind us, the immediate pressure to stock up on merchandise has passed, but retailers remain concerned about tariffs and their impact on the nation’s economy,” said Jonathan Gold, the NRF’s vice president for supply chain and customs policy.
A warehouse / distribution center in the United States with workers.
04 Jan 2019
Even with a US recovery in its 10th year, the transportation and warehouse sectors continue to register strong monthly job growth.
Maersk containers, vessel at port of Paranagua.
20 Dec 2018
After a damaging truck strike, holiday trade gains are expected to be sub-par — although it is historically a time of demand growth.
A warehouse in the United States.
14 Dec 2018
US freight volumes are still growing. Equally significant, the international political climate that affected imports, exports, and trade flows in 2018 could do so again in 2019.
A Maersk Line ship in the Pacific Ocean.
04 Dec 2018
The export/import surge was propelled by a combination of factors.
A truck transport a wind generator blade.
20 Nov 2018
In the next two decades, project construction and transport sectors can expect electricity generation to grow in importance, as emerging nations, particularly those in Asia, shift toward light industry, service economies, and digitization.
Trucks travel on a US highway.
16 Nov 2018
Higher freight volumes and shipper spending reported by the Cass Freight Index show that while the US economy may be expanding more slowly in late 2018, it is not on the verge of a contraction.
Brazil beef.
16 Nov 2018
Almost immediately after Bolsonaro’s announcement, Egypt canceled a trade mission from Brazil that had been scheduled to promote exports, such as beef, chicken, and various fruits.
Alexandria port.
16 Nov 2018
“In my personal opinion, yes [Egypt does need capacity]. I really think there is a growth story. There is congestion and a need for higher-quality infrastructure,” said Khaled Nageib, CEO and president of Egyptian Ports Development Group, a private-sector company engaged in the development of domestic and international ports.
Trucks travel on a US highway.
15 Nov 2018
The changes across the US transportation landscape, from a trade war with mainland China to seemingly unstoppable e-commerce growth, require from logistics managers a drill-like precision and agility and closer collaboration with carriers.
Trucks parked in Louisiana, United States.
02 Nov 2018
If shippers reorganized efficiently and put an end to procurement teams focused solely on price and transactions instead of supply chain efficiency, we would have more drivers available and motivated to take time to train and become more valuable as well as get paid more.
Trucks travel on a US road.
25 Oct 2018
Sequential volume gains may have slowed, but year-over-year shipment increases are still substantial for two of the largest US trucking companies.
Breakbulk Americas, Oct. 2018.
16 Oct 2018
China and Russia are changing global trade rules and the global order in ways "detrimental to US security," a Trump administration document claims.
Port of Colombo, Sri Lanka.
11 Oct 2018
“We want to use the Colombo port for transshipment of goods towards Europe and America, as it will help us cut lead time by nearly 10 days,” said Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association president Siddiqur Rahman.
Port of Los Angeles.
09 Oct 2018
“Retailers are continuing to import merchandise in order to meet consumer demand even though tariffs are now in place on roughly half the goods imported from China and the trade war is still escalating,” Jonathan Gold, vice president for supply chain and customs policy at the National Retail Federation, said Tuesday.
A UPS truck travels in San Francisco, California, United States.
05 Oct 2018
From warehousing to trucking, US employers are rushing to get workers in place for the peak shipping season — and another, likely substantial, increase in end-of-year e-commerce purchases and deliveries.
A freight train travels across China.
04 Oct 2018
China’s government has invested billions in the China-Europe rail network, and volume, propelled by subsidies, has surged. However, those subsidies have created other downsides for shippers and the broader market.
A truck travels on a US highway.
11 Sep 2018
One could argue that the US truck sector has reached its peak, but others believe that with a robust manufacturing sector and other sources of growth, another year of strong truck sector gains is ahead.
JNPT.
04 Sep 2018
Maersk, which transports roughly 20 percent of India’s containerized freight, said three factors have essentially combined to drive that impressive, steady growth.
Shanghai, China.
23 Aug 2018
Launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative is now a major cornerstone of China’s foreign policy.
Port of Los Angeles.
09 Aug 2018
The uptrend in US imports, in line with the US/global expansions, continued in June, but shippers remain cautious, and there are objective, geopolitical reasons why they are not celebrating.
Rotterdam port
02 Aug 2018
Terminal underinvestment points to trade growing at a stronger rate than terminal expansion in the immediate years ahead. Further, there’s another container shipping trend that’s placing an additional demand on terminals/ports.
Maersk Line.
24 Jul 2018
Maersk, the world’s largest ocean carrier, said India — riding a wave of economic reforms — registered an impressive year-over-year increase in its export-import trade with the member countries.
Port of Long Beach.
09 Jul 2018
US importers plan to bring in record container volume this peak season, which will translate into an impressive 2018 year-end gain compared with 2017.
Toronto skyline.
19 Jun 2018
The Canadian economy is “humming,” an economist says, but can it outrun trade disputes with its largest trading partner?
Port of Oakland.
14 Jun 2018
With manufacturing sectors in both nations in a strong uptrend, and China’s middle class expanding while US consumer spending is recovering after a long hiatus, only a full-bore trade war could deflect accelerating container trade between the two economic giants.
Port of Los Angeles.
07 Jun 2018
Global Port Tracker predicts record imports this autumn, with load-center ports once again under the gun to efficiently handle containers for their beneficial cargo owner customers.