The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission and the European Union are monitoring container shipping lines for any evidence of price fixing. According to the article, the scrutiny comes as the prices shipping lines charge have kept rising even as the industry's supply of new ships has continued to increase.
Shipping lines, which were hard hit by the 10% decrease in global trade that occurred in 2009, implemented measures to combat last year's sinking rates - deciding to idle ships and slow steam to save on fuel. These measures have kept shipping lines in business, but regulatory agencies are monitoring whether they are making these decisions independently.
The WSJ also reported that carrier rates are expected to continue their rise as trade recovers further. "Carrier rates and surcharges are expected to keep going up over the summer," said Craig, whose clients include shippers and freight forwarders. "This is an issue which is not going away."