by Wolf Richter
Never a dull moment in the land of consumer stimulus and heavy trucks.
Boom and bust cycles are guaranteed in this business. And now, this is the Weirdest Economy Ever, powered by the $3 trillion the Fed threw at the markets, and by $3 trillion in government stimulus and bailout spending, and by a huge shift to work-from-home and learning-at-home that required all kinds of spending on laptops, network equipment, office chairs, desks, and, well, hot-tubs, and powered also by huge shifts on what consumers actually spent their money on.
Spending shifted from services, such as plane tickets, hotels, gyms, haircuts, manicures, rent (encouraged by eviction bans), and mortgage payments (made possible by forbearance), to stuff. And ecommerce is booming, and this stuff needs to be transported, much of it from overseas, and so imports are booming, and all this stuff has to then be shipped by truck or rail, and so all heck has broken loose in the container shipping business.