Port of Los Angeles operations, on Sunday, November 21, 2021. Video: Bloomberg 

World’s Factories Enter the Long Winter: Bloomberg Trade Tracker


The Bloomberg Trade Tracker shows a more somber outlook for world trade as war in Europe, Covid containment efforts in China and rising interest rates in America rattle factory managers.

German business expectations remained almost five standard deviations below normal in October, and Singapore’s PMI for electronics sunk into below-normal territory for the first time since the early days of the pandemic.

The world’s two biggest economies are feeling similarly glum about the export outlook, with both the US and China gauges in contraction in October and the American one in below-normal range on the Tracker.

“Global trade is moving backwards this year,” Soren Skou, chief executive officer of shipping giant AP Moller-Maersk A/S, said on Bloomberg Television at the start of November as he listed a slew of challenges sending goods trade in reverse.

Long gone is the Covid goods boom — that new TV, couch, and barbecue ordered up during the pandemic won’t need to be replaced for a while, Skou says.

We’ve selected measures across shipping, sentiment and export volumes to watch. For the clearest indication, we measured how far each gauge is from historic norms. These data update in real time from the Bloomberg Terminal as they’re reported.

How the indicators compare 👆

Latest data available for shipping, sentiment and export volume indicators, z-scores*