November 24th SONAR sightings: Atlanta to Chicago, US import demand, and more

Highlights of Wednesday’s SONAR report. To learn more about SONAR, the industry’s fastest cargo forecasting platform, or to request a demo click here.. Also, be sure to check The latest SONAR update, TRAC — The industry’s newest spot rate data.

Lane to see

Zach Strickland, Director, Cargo Market Intelligence

From Memphis to Chicago

Overview: Shippers need to extend their lead times due to tight markets at both the origin and destination.


  • Lane’s van bid rejection rate increased by 427 basis points to 24.8% in the last two weeks.
  • The bid rejection rate for vans in the lane is well below the 32.8% bid rejection rate for all vans leaving Memphis.
  • Chicago van inbound bid lead times have become more concerned about shippers securing capacity during Thanksgiving week, so from the first 2.5 days of the month to the 2.8 days of last week. Has increased to.

What does this mean to you?

broker: Given the current tightness of the Memphis market and the rising bid rejection rate for Chicago’s inbound load, we prioritize covering the load in this lane. The FreightWaves Market Dashboard shows that other brokers are paying an average of $ 3.14 / mile in the lane, including fuel, at $ 3.37 / mile and $ 2.98 / mile, which represent the purchase rates for the 67th and 33rd percentiles, respectively. is.

Carrier: Memphis is a tighter van market than most vans today, with a van outbound bid rejection rate of 32.8%. Therefore, look for a highly rated spot load before accepting a bid to Chicago.

Shipper: As capacity becomes tighter, Chicago’s inbound load will extend lead times above the 2.8-day average. Not only will it be more difficult to secure capacity during the holiday week, Chicago will no longer be the headhole market and it may be more difficult to secure Chicago inbound capacity (Chicago Headhole Index is 10). It dropped from 90 in late May to 52 now).

From Ontario (California) to Dallas

Overview: Capacity can become tighter as truck loading reaches its peak in 2021.


  • Ontario’s outbound bids are increasing by 15% weekly (w / w), but are expected to continue to grow as large imports are still inbound.
  • The Ontario Headhole Index has risen above 78% w / w, indicating that capacity may shrink in the coming days as volumes become more and more imbalanced.
  • Ontario’s outbound bid denial has already risen by 253 bps w / w and may rise further in the coming days.

What does this mean to you?

broker: The amount of outbound is increasing by 15% w / w and is expected to continue to increase as the volume of ports continues to move from the container to the truck loading market. Rejections have already increased by 253 bps w / w, but a significant increase of over 78% in the headhole index indicates that rejections could be even higher in the coming days. Already, the spot rate to Dallas has risen, and the volume surge is not over yet.

Carrier: A spike in the headhole index can continue to cause significant capacity tightening. The amount of outbound is skyrocketing and could reach record highs for the year. For these reasons, keep your rates firmly, paying attention to rejecting outbound bids.

Shipper: The Ontario shipper cohort currently averages 2.6 days in outbound bid lead times and has been steadily increasing over the past few weeks. However, 2.6 days may not be enough time as the outbound volume is heading to its peak in 2021. So far, the goal has been 3.5-4 days to offset the very demanding conditions.

From Atlanta to Chicago

Overview: Atlanta’s capacity goes into a Thanksgiving break.


  • Atlanta’s outbound rejection rate has been steadily declining since late June, dropping from more than 30% to nearly 16% in the last five months.
  • The rejection rate for Chicago has followed a similar pattern over the past two weeks, from 17.5% on November 10th to now over 20%. According to FreightWaves TRAC, this rise has been around $ 2.69 per mile, so it didn’t affect spot rates, but it’s a relatively wide range.
  • Chicago’s outbound denial rate has risen over the past month, increasing by about 3 percentage points during this time.

What does this mean to you?

broker: The spot volume of luggage moved after vacation is expected to increase slightly and the spot rate is expected to be flat to low. Atlanta is relaxed and this lane is stable outside service-sensitive cargo. Charges above $ 3 per mile should be unusual for standard cargo.

Carrier: More capacity will be diverted to cover the contracted cargo in this lane. Chicago is tightening while Atlanta is easing. Unless the cargo returns to Los Angeles, reload potential is rising from the Midwest hub and spot rates are rising.

Shipper: Expect significant impact on the mitigation conditions and services of this lane other than holidays. A slight drop in compliance is obvious, but not as dramatic as the holidays before this year, thanks to easing aggregate demand and increased lead times.

Watch: Bid rejection rate

… Passport survey on US import demand

In the last week, the Port of Los Angeles reported normalizing the level of TEU being processed in the country’s busiest port. The port reported just north of 467,000 TEU in October, a decrease of 8% from October 2020. The total port for LA and Long Beach was 852,000 TEU, a 13% decrease from the peak level experienced in May.

Chart: Freight Waves SONAR. {Left} Inbound Ocean TEU Volume Index for Long Beach Port (blue}, next 7 days {broken white}-{Right} Inbound Ocean TEU Volume Index, for LA Harbor {red}, next 7 days {broken white}

Over the next seven days, the volume from the country of origin to the ports of LA and Long Beach seems to be heading in different directions. Breaking out of the surge in bookings in mid-October, LA Harbor experienced a stabilized and seasonally normalized level of confirmed TEU bookings set to depart from the place of origin. Meanwhile, the Port of Long Beach has been on an upward trend since the surge in October and has been stable at near record levels over the next seven days.

Although the volume to the port in October was modest, the number of vessels moored in San Pedro Bay continues to be more than 80 container vessels per day, with about 5 arriving per day. .. Equipment shortages and domestic capacity limits continue to plague port throughput within the San Pedro Bay Complex, further extending container vessel waiting times. The average time from berth to berth of vessels calling at the Port of Los Angeles is currently on the rise until nearly 19 days.

Chart: Freight Waves SONAR.Sea import cargo by port, percentage calculated from last week’s comparison

Extended waiting times at ports in Los Angeles, Long Beach and Savannah continue to require shippers to bypass ports of entry to alleviate confusion. Last week, a port geographically close to the San Pedro Bay port complex saw a significant increase in sea transport through US Customs. Double-digit growth continues as ports in Tacoma, Washington and Oakland, California continue to be important relief valves for shippers seeking to escape congestion and serve domestic supply channels along the west coast. I am.

Chart: Freight Waves sonar.Drury World Container Index – – Shanghai-New York rating {white} compared to Shanghai-Los Angeles index {green}

Despite showing some relief to shippers in the last few weeks, eastward trans-Pacific spot rates have begun to move away from their downward trend. According to the Drewry World Container Index, spot rates per 40-foot container have increased for the second straight week, indicating that the decline from sky-high sea spot rates is still in the not too distant future. The index’s Shanghai-New York valuation returned to $ 13,139 / FEU, up 3% from the previous week and now up 164% year-on-year. The Shanghai-Los Angeles valuation, which fell below $ 10,000 for the first time since July, jumped 1% w / w to $ 10,038 / FEU, raising the index by 149% year-on-year. Despite stable levels of US imports, clogged ports continue to plague the capacity of available vessels, mitigating all forms of easing for heavily affected spot shippers. I am.

This post was originally published in the Passport newsletter.sign up here

Watch: What is a predictability model?

Focus … Headhole Index Map

Zack Strickland

The Headhole Index (HAUL) shows that the strongest outbound market is located around the country’s largest port.

Southern California, Elizabeth, and Savannah all show strong outbound cargo flows compared to inbound flows.

These markets tend to have higher rates than the inbound heavy markets, which are represented by darker shades of red.

In the Chicago region market, HAUL values ​​have increased significantly over the past few months and spot rates have increased. The Atlanta market fell to a negative HAUL value, leading to lower outbound rates.

The headhole index is calculated by subtracting the inbound tender volume index (ITVI) from the outbound tender volume index (OTVI). November 24th SONAR sightings: Atlanta to Chicago, US import demand, and more

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