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Transcript: Flexport’s Ryan Petersen Says a ‘Great Recession’ Is Here For Ocean Shipping

Shipping containers at the Port of Long Beach in Long Beach, California, US, on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022. 

Shipping containers at the Port of Long Beach in Long Beach, California, US, on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022. 

Photographer: Tim Rue/Bloomberg

Back in early 2021, Ryan Petersen was one of the first people we spoke to on the Odd Lots podcast about supply chain snarls and high shipping costs. The founder and co-CEO of Flexport has since gone on to become a go-to name in the world of logistics, making headlines after he tweeted about what could be done to fix congestion at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. (A Bloomberg Opinion columnist called it the "tweetstorm that saved Christmas.") But fast forward two years and it seems like we're on the verge of a sharp reversal for the shipping industry, with freight rates now plunging and container traffic to the US down almost 20% last month. On this episode, we talk catch up with Petersen to talk about what he's seeing in the industry right now. This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.