The Container Throughput Index of the Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (RWI) and the Institute of Shipping Economics and Logistics (ISL) declined again from (revised) 123.2 to 123.1 points in January.
For the previous month in December, almost all data are available now. These data show at least that the decline was less clear than in the flash estimate published a month ago - the value was revised upwards by 0.5 points.
The extent of this revision is in the range of experience: On average of the last three years, the index was changed from the flash estimate by 0.6 points in the following month. Facing this uncertainty, the current index shows a significantly deceleration, but not necessarily a decline in the development of world trade.
The flash estimate for January is based on data of 29 ports, covering a total of about 70% of container throughput shown in the index.
The index is based on data of 75 world container ports covering approximately 60% of worldwide container handling. The ports are continuously monitored by the ISL as part of their market analysis.
Because large parts of international merchandise trade are transported by ship, the development of port handling is a good indicator for world trade.
As many ports release information about their activities only two weeks after the end of the respective month, the RWI/ISL Container Throughput Index is a reliable early indicator for the development of international merchandise trade and hence for the activity of the global economy.
The RWI/ISL Container Throughput Index for February 2015 will be published on 19 March.
Prof. Dr. Roland Döhrn, tel. +49-201-8149-262
Katharina Brach (Press Office), tel. +49-201-8149-244
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