Market Perspectives – March 31, 2022

Ocean Freight Comments

Transportation and Export Report: Jay O’Neil, O’Neil Commodity Consulting:  In relative terms, it was a calm week in dry-bulk ocean freight markets. This week was a good example of how the Baltic indices and physical markets do not flow together step by step. The Baltic index was lower for the week, but physical markets were mostly unchanged.  All-in-all, markets are still steaming in circles waiting for a clear signal for future direction. There is still much to be known about the Black Sea situation and the potential repositioning of global cargoes. Rates may well be higher in Q4; but between now and then rates will likely have to take a step back for every two steps forward.

Container markets and logistics continue to show slow but gradual improvement. Fuel costs and labor issues remain the big concerns, especially labor negotiations on the U.S. West Coast.