Are analysts and speculators bringing things to light while the logistics industry remains lulled in a false sense of security, shippers are wringing their hands over a lack of services and final customers remain in a beauty sleep?
FedEx accompanied a recent profit warning, which predicted a figure that stood USD 500 million below its original forecast for 2022, with evoking a recession by predicting declining freight volumes at a global level. A listed company can rely on certain reactions, just like a doctor on their hammer and the kneecap reflex. Thus the permanently nervous boys on Wall Street sent the S&P500 company’s shares crashing down by almost 21%. The collateral damage on the stock markets is also considerable, as the shares of the biggest beneficiaries of the logistics boom so far, including Maersk, Kuehne+Nagel and Hapag-Lloyd, lost a large part of their value.
The interim demise of the global economy in the 21st century always begins with such start signals. On 18 March 2000 the sudden demise of the European fashion platform Boo.com heralded the end of the first internet revolution worldwide. From 15 September 2008 onwards the insolvency of the investment bank Lehman Brothers turned global financial flows into veritable trickles. Will 16 September 2022 now become a similar key date in economic history? Feel free to quote me later on – I don’t think so.
I’m not citing those who have spoken of the usual cooling of overheated markets and the normalisation of demand after two years of emergency, nor those who consider the event a minor sandbank in the otherwise leisurely flow of developments.
Rather, I believe that the hour has come for those who have done their homework. The scale ranges from the production planning of shippers to the capacity developments in the logistics industry to the spending discipline of the consumer. In the end it’s up to all of us to decide for ourselves the extent to which we believe the domino effect will take hold. Once again, it’s the human factor that counts.
Our industry isn’t standing still anyway, and you will find examples of many new and ongoing trends in the market, especially in green transport, in this issue of the ITJ. You can read about important developments in Germany, on water, air and on the railways, as well as about the ever more important cool-chain sector.
We hope you enjoy your read!