Supply Chain by the Numbers: Week of August 13, 2009

-August 13, 2009


This Week’s Supply Chain by the Numbers – Ocean Rates Spike, Thinking Inside the Box, Sourcing Optimization, Teamsters Give In


The Supply Chain and Logistics Numbers Worth Knowing This Week: Ocean Shipping Rates Rise from Depths, Better Packaging Reduces Logistics Costs, Optimizing the Path to Procurement Savings, Teamsters Concede to Save YRC



The rise last week in average spot market prices for shipping a 40-foot container from Hong Kong to Los Angeles, according to the highly respected analysts at London’s Drewry Shipping Consultants. This incredible increase, if accurate, is probably more a reflection of carriers trying to stick to profitable levels of pricing than it is any real sign of changes yet in supply versus demand.




The increase in the number of cartons per pallet (from 120 to 300) that one telecommunications company was able to achieve by redesigning its product packaging for a specific SKU, according to Tom Blanck of Adalis, on a Videocast this week from SCDigest on packaging optimization (to view On-Demand version, please go to: Thinking Inside the Box: Packaging and Supply Chain Optimization)


Average procurement cost savings from use of “sourcing optimization” software, according to a recent report from the CAPS Research group at Arizona State University. These tools, long used by some companies to manage complex bid processes for transportation sourcing, are increasingly being used for other product categories, according to CAPS.

$45 million

The monthly savings Yellow Roadway (YRC Worldwide) expects from the concessions just agreed to by the Teamsters union (the second such concession this year), which included a 5% wage reduction and temporary suspension of pension contributions by the company. Whether that is enough to save the heavily in debted LTL carrier is still unclear.