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Cost of shipping between China and U.S. plunges

Looming off-season and power crunch have forced prices down after record highs

Yangshan Deep Water Port in Shanghai. Shipping costs from China to the U.S. skyrocketed after the start of the pandemic and have now moderated but remain high.   © Reuters

The cost of shipping between China and the U.S. plunged this week after hitting record highs in early September as the off-season approaches, a power crunch slows Chinese manufacturing and speculators rush to sell their hoarded shipping spots.

An executive with a Shanghai freight company said Thursday that the cost of shipping a 40-foot container from China to the U.S. West Coast dropped nearly half in the previous four days, going from about $15,000 to just over $8,000. The spot rate for shipping to the East Coast had fallen by more than one-quarter from over $20,000 to less than $15,000.

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