The International Air Transport Association released its air freight market analysis for June 2016, showing a 4.3% year-over-year increase in worldwide cargo traffic (in freight tonne kilometers flown) –the strongest y-o-y growth since the first quarter of 2015. International cargo traffic, which accounts for 87% of total traffic, was up 4.1%. For the first half of 2016, IATA reported total traffic up 0.5% and international traffic up 0.2%.
The IATA June result is in line with our prediction two weeks ago that June traffic would be up almost 5% over June 2015. However, we point out that data published by WorldACD earlier this week showed worldwide air cargo volume (in chargeable weight) up just 2.7% y-o-y for the month.
Perhaps the most interesting datum in the chart is the continuing strong growth in traffic reported by carriers in Europe. Since the traditional big three cargo carriers – Air France-KLM, Lufthansa, and IAG – are all reporting significant declines, this means the rest of Europe’s carriers must be doing very well indeed.
Looking ahead, IATA maintained its prediction that full-year 2016 cargo traffic would be up 2.1% over 2015. Given that we are at the halfway point of the year, with growth to date of just 0.5%, meeting IATA’s target will require monthly year-over-year growth of somewhere around 4% for the remainder of the year. Is this likely? It is certainly possible, but one good month does not make a trend, and, given the state of world politics (Brexit, the American election, rumblings in the South China Sea), prediction is difficult.
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