Global air cargo logged volume growth in December of 9.4% and posted a 4.5% expansion in revenue, only the second month after November to show a year-on-year revenue increase in 2016, according to WorldACD.
Unlike in previous years, the origins Europe and North America recorded strong December business, at a par with the top month of October. In line with the demand for perishables, Africa and Latin America peaked in December. But Asia-Pacific still had November as the best month of the year.
The fourth quarter of 2016 displayed the best quarterly year-on-year performance since 2010 with a chargeable weight increase of 7.5% and growth in DTKs (direct ton kilometers) of 8.3%. This means, said WorldACD, that the average distance between origin and final destination of the shipments carried increased slightly, as DTK growth outpaced weight growth.
Moreover, in the last quarter of 2016, average yield was around 6% higher than in Q3, compared to both 2014 and 2015, when the average yield in Q4 was only about 1% higher than in the third quarter.
“With the strengthening USD, yields measured in other currencies actually grew even more. Rising oil prices may have played a role in these yield movements,” said the market research service.
For the full year 2016, worldwide chargeable weight increased by 3.1% and DTKs by 3.4%. But WorldACD noted how growth figures in 2016 were slightly distorted by the negative figures in the first quarter owing to the exceptional trans-Pacific air cargo volumes logged in the first three months of 2015.
If the 2016 numbers are added up excluding the first-quarter figures, there would be a 4.4% weight growth coupled with a 5.2% DTK increase. The report said this seems to indicate “no tendency towards ‘near-shoring’ yet.”
Photo: Konstantin von Wedelstaedt