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Ocean Timeliness Indicator

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Transpacific Eastbound Routes Take Longer Than Ever

Flexport’s Ocean Timeliness Indicator measures the amount of time taken to ship freight from the point at which cargo is ready to leave the exporter to when it is collected from its destination port. The ocean shipping world tends to run along “trade lanes.” The two biggest trade lanes carry goods from Asia to North America and from Asia to Europe. The OTI captures timeliness on each of these. In our latest update, the Transpacific Eastbound (TPEB) measure set yet another record high while Far East Westbound (FEWB) dipped by a day.

The Methodology: The Flexport Ocean Timeliness Indicator (OTI) utilizes data from Flexport’s ocean shipping operations for an expansive view of a container’s journey. Updated on a weekly basis, it shows the time taken to transit from Cargo Ready Date at exporters’ gate to the Destination Port Departure date when products are ready to leave port to go to importers. Measures are shown for Far East Westbound (e.g., China-to-Europe) and Transpacific Eastbound (e.g., China-to-US) routes.

Week to Jan. 9, 2022

The OTI for both TPEB and FEWB took divergent paths with TPEB reaching yet another new record high while FEWB took a step downwards.

TPEB reached a record high of 113 days, up by three days from just a week earlier. All the major elements of the routing including Asia port handling, ocean-crossing time and North America port handling, increased.

FEWB dipped one day lower to 107 days, the lowest level since mid-November. A reduction in handling times at Asian ports was offset by increased ocean-crossing times.

Some care is needed when considering week-to-week changes in the OTI as exogenous factors such as the Golden Week holiday or port closures can have an outsized impact on a given week’s data. Comparing the past four weeks’ average to Jan. 9 with the prior four weeks (i.e. to Dec. 12) shows TPEB up by six days and FEWB down by one day.

Please direct questions about the Flexport OTI to economics@flexport.com.

Disclaimer: The contents of this report are made available for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon for any legal, business, or financial decisions. Flexport does not guarantee, represent, or warrant any of the contents of this report because they are based on our current beliefs, expectations, and assumptions, about which there can be no assurance due to various anticipated and unanticipated events that may occur. This report has been prepared to the best of our knowledge and research; however, the information presented herein may not reflect the most current regulatory or industry developments. Neither Flexport nor its advisors or affiliates shall be liable for any losses that arise in any way due to the reliance on the contents contained in this report.

Indicators

Indicator Release Date Release
Ocean Timeliness Indicator January 3, 2022 View PDF
Ocean Timeliness Indicator December 27, 2021 View PDF
Ocean Timeliness Indicator December 20, 2021 View PDF
Ocean Timeliness Indicator December 13, 2021 View PDF
Ocean Timeliness Indicator December 6, 2021 View PDF
Ocean Timeliness Indicator December 1, 2021 View PDF

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