As a 2.1% decrease in high street sales figures has just been reported* after Hellmann Worldwide Logistics UK saw a 22% drop in import tonnage in April of 2011, the logistics operator is suggesting that using logistics as a barometer for the economic climate is more accurate than ever.
With import tonnage (ex Asia) a direct reflection of high street activity, and sea freight volume picking back up throughout May as retailers replenished stock levels, Hellmann UK is suggesting that June may be a more positive month.
Matthew Marriott, Commercial Director of Hellmann UK, said:
"The logistics industry tends to feel tremors or even major movements in the economy first when it comes to consumer spending and manufacturing output. From recent results, it would appear that we are seeing a slow down in imports for air freight and sea freight, which affects the high street. May’s increase in volume could either be a requirement of the high street needing to replenish or a genuine uplift. However, as air freight has stayed flat in May, I would suspect that the ocean freight increase is more likely to be linked to inventory levels than high street demand."
Using the logistics industry as a barometer to help predict the rise and fall of the UK market is a measure Hellmann Worldwide Logistics UK is using to predict future economic performance. It is currently working on the Hellmann Economic Index (HEI) to show the accuracy of its gauge.