air cargo
© Rafael Ben Ari

IATA has released its air freight figures for November, which feels like a long time ago now. And yes, it was officially busy. Freight tonne kilometres were up 8.8% year on year, and ahead of the 5.8% growth seen in October. The penultimate month ensured that the industry was on track to record its strongest operational and financial annual performance since 2010. And, noted IATA, the PMI reached a seven-year high in the fourth quarter, suggesting that the momentum is continuing.

What perhaps is most striking about these figures, though, is the load factors. Capacity in November was at a premium – numerous forwarders complained of chronic lack of space. Airlines were not flying empty.  And yet the IATA international freight load factors (by weight) average at 49.2%. The highest was in Asia Pacific, at 60%. Project Selfie, however, found that volume load factors came in 10 percentage points higher and dynamic load factors came in 15 percentage points higher. Which appears to more accurately reflect the market.

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