Survey Results on Container Rates, Inflation and Predictions

Thanks to all of you who responded to the latest survey. Below is a comparison between the August survey and the one just completed at the end of October.

What are you currently paying for a container from China to the U.S?

Not surprisingly, container costs are up for toy industry importers. In August, 13.2% of respondents indicated paying between $20.000 and $25,000 for a container. That percentage has increased to 28% (+15%). As a result, the percentage of those who stated they were paying between $15,000 and $20,000 in August declined from 27% to 19.5% ( -7.5%).

How do you predict you will finish 2021?

The toy industry is feeling optimistic despite the hue and cry over inventory availability. In August, 37.5% of those surveyed predicted they would finish the year up in double digits. In October, that percentage rose to 46% (+8.5%).

Overall, 84% of October respondents anticipate they will be up or even with 2020 – up from 78% in August (+ 6%).

How do you predict the toy industry will finish in 2021?

Those surveyed are more optimistic about the toy industry’s fortunes in 2021 than in August. The percentage of those who thought the industry would end the year up in 2021 rose from 83% in August to 89% in October (+ 6%).

If you are a toy company, are you taking price increases?

6% of those surveyed in August stated they were raising their prices from 15 to 20%. That percentage doubled in August to 12% (+ 6%). Those taking price increases in excess of 20% increased from 5.5% in August to 8.5% in October.

If you are a retailer taking price increases, what are they averaging?

6% of those surveyed in August stated they were raising their prices from 15 to 20%. That percentage tripled in August to 19% (+ 13%).


It is interesting (and a bit ironic) that toy industry survey respondents are fighting against unprecedented 21st-century headwinds (Massive cost increases for freight, inflation, and inventory shortages) yet are overwhelmingly positive about 2021. Their responses tell us that they believe that whatever these headwinds are, they will overcome them.

It’s an optimistic position but one that is not surprising coming from an industry that is historically resilient.

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