If shippers think they have been having issues, it is likely to get a whole lot more challenging over the next couple of months. What is not being reported is that many of the Chinese producers do not have too much warehouse capacity. Many of them are set up to move their daily production into containers. The shortage of containers is causing inventory to be stacked up and now is being forced to be stored outside with tarp protection. We’ve been told this will only suffice for a couple of more weeks at which point a plant will be shut down because there is literally no place to store the inventory.
Additionally, ocean freight rates in the spot market are running at $9,000, but small to midsize shippers (less than 2000 containers annually) are paying $14,000 - $16,000 if they need the container moved. Projected for them – $16,000 to $20,000 in next four to six weeks as Wal-Mart, Home Depot buying up future capacity.
Could lead to additional price increases in the store fixture and display market prior to end of calendar year.