European road freight rates overtake pre-Covid levels, but capacity still down
11.10.2020
Freight rates on European roads rose in October and passed pre-crisis levels, according to new data from Transporeon, indicating an economic recovery might be under way.

The company’s transport market monitor showed the European road freight spot rates price index in October was 1.2% higher than October 2019.

It was also 3.6% higher than in September this year.

However, Transporeon executives noted that part of the reason for the price rise was due to capacity continuing to be curtailed.

«We are seeing the first increase in available transport capacities recorded since April. At the same time, we observe an ongoing trend for increasing prices.

«This is a normal development in times of generally low levels of available capacity in the spot market,» said Oliver Kahrs, MD of Tim Consult, a Transporeon subsidiary that collects and processes the road freight data.

The transport market monitor shows that, while freight capacity on Europe’s roads increased 6.3% from September to October as carriers reacted to increasing demand, capacity last month was still some 20.3% lower than October 2019.

"This month’s data can be read as a sign that the positive price trend observed after the summer break was not just a seasonal phenomenon, but a sign for an economic recovery.

"The interesting question now is how the second wave of lockdowns in Europe will affect this, Mr Kahrs added.

Interestingly, rising freight rates have taken place against a background of falling fuel costs — normally the two move in concert. According to EU statistics body Eurostat, pan-European diesel prices in the third quarter of this year are 4.8% lower than they were in the second quarter, and 14.8% lower than in the third quarter last year, which also points to an improving demand picture.

Analytics on topic
Report
08.06.2020
Report
08.06.2020
European Economic Forecast (Summer 2020)
In a new European Economic Forecast, the European Commission expects a deeper recession and a slower recovery for the economy of the Union. However, the blow caused by the pandemic differs from country to country with some states and industries expected to recover faster due to internal factors.
Article
07.23.2020
EU car sales forecast 2020: Record drop of 25% expected this year, says ACEA
In the light of the major economic crisis facing the auto industry due to COVID-19, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) has radically revised its 2020 forecast for passenger car registrations down to about −25%.
Source: European Automobile Manufacturers Association