Moreover, even if the demand is impacted by period cycle, international freight is in constant growth. There might be a slowdown at some point of the year (usually around Christmas), but this is counterbalanced by an important increase at the beginning of each year.
The rates remain high because there are still problems of spaces for loading ships. The “peak season” is the period from May to November, there is a great demand for freight transport. In this period, you might expect higher rates as compared to slowdown periods.
Fuel is another crucial factor in the market, or what is called the Bunker Fuel Factor. It is often a possible surcharge that the carrier can charge when oil prices vary.