FreightWaves SONAR: LA Freight Market Is Heating Up

As the freight economy recovers, several important trends are centered around Los Angeles: import volume, outbound freight volume, and intermodal’s degree of competitiveness with truckload. In short, LA is hot with an improving freight market boosting both truckload and intermodal as shown in the FreightWaves SONAR charts below.

FreightWaves SONAR: Trans-Pacific Rates Surge as Volume Rebounds

Politically, the U.S. and China are barely on speaking terms. Trade-wise, they’re still very much in bed together. Cargo from China is accounting for an even greater share of inbound container volumes than before the coronavirus crisis, according to the latest U.S. Customs data.

FreightWaves SONAR: Savannah Expansion Projects Position Region for Intermodal Growth

The Port of Savannah is poised to expand service and rail capacity as the Mason Mega Rail project meets a production milestone.

FreightWaves SONAR: Renewed Trade War Fears Could Bring Volumes Forward

The U.S.-China Phase One trade deal is not dead, but it is on life support. And even though there has been no mention yet of new sanctions, the two superpowers’ deteriorating relationship could sway container demand.

FreightWaves SONAR: UP Eyes Intermodal, Grain Opportunities

Carloads for grain and motor vehicles have risen in recent weeks, a sign that the rail volumes could potentially be past their bottoming out, according to Union Pacific (NYSE: UNP) CEO Lance Fritz.

FreightWaves SONAR: Connecting the Dots Between ‘Blank’ Sailings and Rail

After “blanking” (canceling) around 20% of Asia-to-U.S. capacity in May and June, it now appears likely that container-ship carriers will cut fewer sailings in July, possibly as low as 10%.

FreightWaves SONAR: Railroads Pin Hopes on Auto Manufacturing as U.S. Carloads Sustain Record Decline

The Class I railroads are closely watching the restart of North American automotive production, hoping that the slow ramp-up will not only grow motor vehicle volumes but also improve demand for supplies such as steel and plastics, according to executives at recent investor conferences. However, a key unknown variable is whether consumer demand will lift volumes for automobiles and other goods, executives said.

FreightWaves SONAR: Data Highlights Intermodal/Truck Competition by Lane

Numerous factors are impairing intermodal volume growth. These include blanked sailings, a shift in overall freight demand toward refrigerated, an uncertain outlook for consumer demand and, of course, competition from the highway.

FreightWaves SONAR: Container-Import Roller Coaster: Down, Up, Down … Up?

U.S. container imports are on a wild ride. They plunged in March after the initial coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China. They bounced back in April when delayed bookings were loaded after China came back online. Beginning in May, they sank again as container carriers “blanked” (canceled) sailings. Now, it looks like there could be at least some momentum in the positive direction.

FreightWaves SONAR: Port Volume Weakness Through at Least June in L.A., Savannah

Directors of the ports at Los Angeles and Savannah agree that the second quarter will be tough on port volumes as both facilities cope with blanked (cancelled) sailings. The lower port volumes, coupled with a loose truck market, could be a double whammy for U.S. Class I railroads.