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Airfreight outlook uncertain, say analysts

[ June 2, 2021   //   ]

There is a question mark over airfreight’s market recovery, say analysts Clive Data Services and TAC Index in their latest report. Continued market uncertainties and extended public holidays contributed  to a -4% drop in global demand in May 2021 versus the pre-Covid level in 2019, they said.

(To offer a meaningful perspective of the air cargo industry’s performance, CLIVE Data Services is continuing to focus on comparing the current state of the market to pre-Covid 2019 volume, cargo capacity and load factor data until at least Q3 of this year, alongside the 2020 comparison.)

After more positive indicators for the air cargo market in the first four months of the year, May 2021 data showed a less favourable trend, with the fall in demand joined by a second consecutive month-over-month drop in ‘dynamic loadfactor’ and airfreight rates, which peaked in early May, falling away towards the end of the month.    

The global air cargo industry will now have to wait until the publication of June 2021 market data to determine if May’s public holiday disruptions explain the shift in demand or whether the positivity of April’s +1% growth versus the same month of 2019 created a ‘false dawn’ of a sustainable growth recovery for the rest of the year.

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