Overall capacity in the major east-west trades was mostly stagnant in the first quarter of 2014, with the exception of the eastbound transpacific, which fell for the second straight quarter, while the member carriers of the G6, P3 and newly-formed CKYHE alliances continued to jockey for market share, according to the latest quarterly World Liner Supply Report from BlueWater Reporting.
The only significant change among the three major east-west trades came in the eastbound transpacific, which is also the only of the three in which P3 Alliance member carriers Maersk Line, Mediterranean Shipping Co. and CMA CGM do not have the largest share of the market capacity. After a previous overall decrease of 6.3 percent in weekly allocated capacity from the end of the third quarter to the end of the fourth quarter 2013, weekly allocated capacity fell again in the first quarter of 2014, from 247,342 TEUs to 229,627 TEUs. This represents a decrease of 7.1 percent, meaning that overall weekly allocated capacity in the eastbound transpacific has fallen more than 13 percent from 264,067 TEUs at the end of the third quarter to the end of the first quarter of 2014. In terms of market share, the CKYHE carriers, COSCO, “K” Line, Yang Ming, Hanjin and Evergreen, relinquished their slim lead on the G6 members, APL, MOL, HMM, Hapag-Lloyd, NYK and OOCL, decreasing from 37.42 percent at the end of Q4 2013 to 35.44 percent at the end of Q1 2014 while the G6 increased from 35.05 percent to 37.34 percent. By the end of the first quarter, the P3 carriers had lost 1.6 percent of the market share by weekly allocated capacity, decreasing from 20.28 percent to 18.68 percent from the end of the fourth quarter 2013. In total, the three alliances controlled a 91.47 percent share of the eastbound transpacific volume at the end of Q1 2014, up from 91.36 percent at the end of Q4 2013.
At the end of the fourth quarter of 2013, services dominated by P3 Alliance members owned a combined 44.07 percent share of the 205,370 TEUs of weekly allocated capacity from Asia to Northern Europe. The G6 Alliance members had a 23.31 percent share of capacity, while the carriers of the CKYHE Alliance had a 23.98 percent share, giving the three alliances a staggering 91.36 percent combined market share in the trade. By the end of Q1 2014, overall weekly allocated capacity had risen slightly to 207,258 TEUs, an increase of less than 1 percent, but the combined market share of the alliance member carriers actually decreased slightly to 90.55 percent. Individually, the G6 members actually gained 1.14 percent of the market share by volume, while the P3 and CKYHE Alliance members lost 1.57 percent and .37 percent, respectively.
Of the three major east-west trades, the westbound transatlantic once again saw the least amount of change in terms of overall volume and alliance market share, increasing overall weekly allocated capacity by just .1 percent. At the end of the fourth quarter of 2013, weekly allocated capacity in the trade was 59,527 TEUs, up from 59,458 TEUs at the end of the fourth quarter of 2013, though still not as high as the 60,807 TEUS of weekly allocated capacity in the trade at the end of the third quarter. The G6 member carriers still led the way in the trade, increasing slightly from a market share of 44.87 percent to 45.48 percent, with the P3 carriers falling further behind them, their market share down 1 percent, from 43.73 percent to 42.73 percent. At the end of Q1 2014, the CKYHE Alliance held a 7.63 percent market share, down only .01 percent from 7.64 percent at the end of Q4 2013. The combined alliance market share was 95.84 percent at the end of the first quarter, down slightly from 96.24 percent in Q4 2013.
BlueWater Reporting tracks the weekly TEU capacity of competitive direct liner services on 30 individual lanes operating between Asia, Europe, and North and South America, taking into account skipped sailings and slow steaming, and estimates the allocation of that capacity within each specific trade lane. BlueWater’s quarterly World Liner Supply Reports are designed to help ocean carriers, non-vessel-operating common carriers, freight forwarders, shippers, ports and analysts monitor trends in ocean liner shipping capacity.
The 2014 First Quarter WLS report is downloadable in Excel spreadsheet form here. You must be an American Shipper Global subscriber, a BlueWater Reporting individual subscriber or a BlueWater Reporting corporate subscriber to download the World Liner Supply Report. You may also purchase this report for $250 here.