New container prices fall to record lows on cheap steel and weak demand

Shipping container costs continue to fall as cheap steel and weakening demand drives prices ever lower, says London's Drewry Maritime Research. The container equipment index price at the end of 2015 was US$1,450 per TEU down from $1,900 a year earlier. The average price for the year was $1,750, down 15 per cent on 2014 and by the end of 2015 the index had fallen close to the all-time low of 2001-02.

"Some of the recent price fall has resulted from the weakening state of the global economy and the decline in trade demand," said Drewry's lead analyst for container equipment Andrew Foxcroft. By end-2015, the new-for-old replacement cost of the global box fleet was down to $77 billion, which compared with $90 billion or greater for each of the preceding five year-ends.