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The weekly tanker market report by Gibson Shipbrokers features an overview of the crude oil and oil product tanker market.
On 12 April 2016, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) released its updated World Economic Outlook stating that future economic prospects are now so poor that an immediate, proactive response is called for.
The 2015 has started off as a pretty challenging year for the container shipping industry. With volatile spot rates coupled with oversupply and ordering of ever bigger ships, shipowners across the board seem to have a lot on their plates.
The world seems to be awash with oil these days, to an extent that no geo-political tensions in the oil-rich producing nations can make us “scared enough” to hike oil prices. We seem to have become accustomed to a world where such tension is the norm. This is very good news for the world economy, as it brings down the cost of energy – despite a number of ongoing major conflicts and the challenges related to Ebola in West Africa.
Global oil demand is seasonal, with Q1 being the weakest season – again, leaving only upside for the remainder of the year.
”The smaller the better” seems to be the mantra in the tanker segment these days. Whilst all crude tanker segments enjoyed a spike in earnings in late December, the subsequent drop hit the VLCC much harder than the Aframax segment.
Overall, it’s noticeable that record numbers of fixtures and demand for tonnage only produce a short-lived spike at rather low altitudes – making little impact on stretched owners’ financial accounts. Ship owners without a solid cash balance and a strong, or at least sustainable, cash flow will find it increasing difficult to continue in this business at the present level and volatility.