Black Friday this week will feature cut-throat deals, but how can this be profitable for retailers?
Rock bottom freight rates are contributing to the offers.
A deep slump in shipping volumes spurred by weaker demand for commodities and slower global trade has a silver lining in sending bulk and container rates to record lows, allowing good to be shipped at low costs, according to real-time freight rate database Freightos.
Figured pulled from the database by Freightos highlighted a few key products that may fill holiday season shopping baskets at lower costs because of shipping rates, noting for example than a $2,000 Apple MacBook Pro costs $1.50 to import into the U.S. by freighter.
At the same time, it costs 2.5 times more for overnight delivery from New Jersey to New York via trucks for a 55-inch television set than it does sending by ocean freight from the South Korea to the U.S. The largest ocean liners can hold over 1.2 million TV sets, underscoring the economy of scale.
According to a Friday report from IHS Markit, which runs a maritime information service, the spot Asia-U.S. West Coast ocean freight rate fell 18 percent from a week ago to $1,687 per 40-foot-equivalent unit.