Ocean and air freight rates and trends; customs and trade industry news plus COVID-19 impacts for the week of September 9, 2020.
United States 🇺🇸 full report on manufacturers’ shipments, inventories and orders for the month of July saw new orders for manufactured goods increase 6.4%, marking the third consecutive month over month increase.
Canadian 🇨🇦 auto workers have chosen Ford as a potential strike target as the company weighs future production commitments. (ABC News)
China 🇨🇳 expanded its August manufacturing activity at fastest rate in almost 10 years (Aljazeera)
Thailand 🇹🇭 , the world's largest rubber supplier, is ramping up production of medical gloves to help supply the growing global demand driven by Covid-19. (Bloomberg)
Malaysia’s 🇲🇾 furniture exports should continue to benefit from the US-China trade war along with low raw-material prices and a favorable exchange rate. (New Straits Times)
Germany 🇩🇪 is ruled out of Daimler’s production expansion. Mercedes’ owner will invest in the rapidly growing Chinese market as it prepares deeper cost cuts. (Financial Times)
FDA Moving to Phase 2 Artificial-Intelligence Testing The FDA announced they are pushing forward to their phase 2 testing using artificial intelligence to screen imports of seafood. The first phase, completed in 2019, indicated the approach tripled the likelihood of identifying a shipment containing seafood with a public health concern. The second phase will be testing the new AI technology in the field. The AI will use historical data from previous seafood shipments to help FDA staff decide which shipments to examine.
Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act Up For Renewal The House Ways and Means Committee is holding an online hearing Thursday, September 10th to make a decision on the renewal of the act. Renewal is expected before the act expires at the end of September.
Reduction to Brazilian Steel Quota In a Federal Register Notice, the USTR announced that the US will lower the steel quota from Brazil. Originally the quota was implemented to avoid placing Section 232 tariffs on Brazilian steel. The quota has now been reduced by approximately 10%.
ITC Issues 2019 Year In Trade Report The ITC issued its yearly report for 2019. It covers a wide range of topics including AD/CVD, IPR infringement, national security, Section 301 duties, trade-agreement changes, new trade agreements and negotiations, trade relations with our biggest partners, and disputes/settlements with the WTO.
Weekly initial jobless claims appeared to drop sharply from 1.011m the week before to 881K—but a change to seasonal adjustment procedures made the numbers difficult to compare. Unadjusted claims actually rose over the week.
US trade expanded in July. Imports of goods and services increased by 10.9%, while exports increased by 8.1% over June. Over the year through July, however, 2020 goods imports were down 12.3% from 2019, while goods exports were down 16.5%.
US manufacturing showed August strength in an Institute of Supply Management survey, the fourth straight monthly gain.
Vaccine Logistics Begin to Take Shape
With over 250 candidates for a Covid-19 vaccine, it’s still too early to tell the exact shape of vaccine logistics, but various corners of industry are preparing to serve more than 200 countries, according to the Journal of Commerce. A viable medical supply chain requires a scale of distribution, including stringent temperature requirements, that will dwarf even the inbound rush of PPE during the height of the pandemic.
Low-Cost Airlines Moving into Cargo After years of minimal interest in shipping, low-cost passenger airlines are removing seats to make space for cargo. The Loadstar reports that the manual loading of these planes is usually not economical—and the sudden additions at airports are causing congestion—but the increased capacity is welcome.
Container Shipments to US Rise Peak season arrives on a wave of current and pent-up demand, reports the Wall Street Journal, with container volumes reflecting e-commerce surges and the upcoming holiday season.
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