🚗 🚙 Turn your trusty old car into trustworthy journalism Learn more

New report says the cost of transporting goods has skyrocketed

Amanda Peacher Dec 7, 2021
Heard on:
HTML EMBED:
COPY
Container ships outside the Port of Long Beach in California. David McNew/Getty Images

New report says the cost of transporting goods has skyrocketed

Amanda Peacher Dec 7, 2021
Heard on:
Container ships outside the Port of Long Beach in California. David McNew/Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

The latest report from the Logistics Managers Index is out today. It’s a monthly survey that measures, among other things, transportation costs. And it shows that in November, the cost of shipping freight is “astronomical”– those are words from the report’s authors.

There are enough ships and trucks and containers to move goods around the world, said Paul Bingham, transportation economist at IHS Markit. 

But, they’re not always moving. 

“It’s a vessel sitting at anchor waiting to get into a port, or a truck driver sitting in his truck waiting for several hours to get loaded,” he said.

Bingham said those kinds of inefficiencies are driving up demand and transportation prices right now, along with rising wages and fuel costs. 

Dale Rogers is a professor of logistics and supply chain management at Arizona State University, and one of the authors of the report. He said a couple of years ago it cost maybe $1,000 to $2,000 to ship a container from China to L.A. 

“Today, that same trip is $18,000 to $20,000 a container,” he said, adding that higher sticker prices on everything from appliances to new cars these days in part reflect the cost of getting products from A to B. 

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.