Shipping Markets: a summer of discontent?

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John Faraclas

John Faraclas

As said in our last recapitulation on the shipping markets, there isn’t any sustainability – at least for the time being and with an uncertain world order, not just the geopolitical issues looming in the background,  things can get sour.

This is the eighteenth overview of the shipping markets and world events by John Faraclas from www.allaboutshipping.co.uk in London the 16th May 2014: 

The BDI closed up six points at 1.027, which is 20 points plus since last week’s 997 points; nothing much to… celebrate, as again only one category did well, that’s the Panamaxes and expect an unpleasant summer overall. The only good thing is that the index closed above the 1, 000 point mark. Overall this is a 54 centum loss of the BDI from its last high closing at the end of December 2013; 1, 200 points down! Can we reach say in the next two months the 2, 000 point mark?

  • The BCI, closed down 16 points since yesterday at 1, 530 points which is 17 points down since last week’s 1, 547 points.
  • The BPI was up 25 points since yesterday, but also 142 points up since last week’s 899; and it went above the 1, 000 point mark…that’s something…
  • The BSI down 2 points since yesterday at 899 and 10 points down since last Friday’s 909; still under the 1, 000 point mark…
  • The BHSI was down too five points at 485, which is 21 points down since last week and still under the 500 level.. So, all in all, despite going above the 1, 000 point mark, the markets are heading dowdown!
  • Coming to the wets now:  a minus one point at 656 for BDTI – which is also ten points down since last week and the BCTI up one point since yesterday at 532…
  • The Box trade is also in a very difficult curb and if we like to say something for the entire industry, opportunism and money is the name of the game; few winners and many losers, just wait and see.

The Market, particularly the dry sector as it stands and with whatever happens is good for those with money available, cash or otherwise to contract cheap but sound tonnage; a great market. So we have the bright side too, and why not! The issue here is who knows how to build low-priced good, versatile and sound ships despite the fact that volatility is there…err here to stay…

UKRAINE is now on the brink of more than a war; expect many changes…in the geopolitical front and frontiers too.  Whether the West doesn’t like this situation and doesn’t recognise what is happening (referendums etc. etc.), may I remind you that in the past the West never recognised the annexation of the three Baltic States to the Soviet Union – those of you coming from a seafaring profession I am sure you remember in the chartroom the Admiralty Charts and others mentioning in red that the USA etc. etc. doesn’t recognise these annexations and occupation; yet these three nations remained under the Soviet domination, regime if you like it, until the “collapse” of the Eastern Block… Come on gays, let’s be serious…

The SEWOL – still 23 missing nearly a month after she went down with divers still searching; from the 476 on board, 276 are confirmed dead making the worst maritime accidents for South Korea and beyond. As more accidents are to happen, we urge those responsible and all the regulatory bodies to intervene before it is too late. No excuses please…

India’s Prime Minister-elect Narendra Modi got the most decisive result and victory for almost three decades; a lot is to come out there in the world’s biggest democracy! Sonia Gandhi of the Congress party has to see where the party goes as Manmohan Singh and leading the party were crashed…

The South China Sea is still getting hotter… with Japan’s Prime Minister Abe calling for a new interpretation of the constitution, which could pave the way for the military to fight overseas; so after Abenomics et al we will see Abewarnings… China and Vietnam strangely at odds – China is adamant and its oil rig will continue to drill in the South China Sea, despite deadly riots in Vietnam.

The Chinese General Fang Fenghui asked the Americans to stay out of Beijing-Hanoi …stand-off. Been there recently, I have the sense that something big will come out, if both “combatants” don’t resume to talks and de-escalation of the drilling crisis. The other nations in the area too are carefully preparing themselves…The situation in Vietnam in case of an adventure with China could be detrimental, despite being old comrades et al…

Europe has elections with Greece in the most …”enviable” place. A lot of issues at stake irrespective the result. Be prepared for the inevitable; any bets?

WISTA-UK is getting ready for the Liverpool event on the 16th of June, so the count don has begun… Expect a great event there!  Equally, WISTA Cyprus are getting ready for the 34th WISTA International AGM & Conference between the 8-11th of October this year and the theme is: Shipping Connects”! Lastly WISTA-Hellas are also going to surprise the lot during this year’s Posidonia!

Sad to hear that former Greek shipowners’ president, Menis Karageorgis passed  away aged 81 in Cyprus; Karageorgis was one of Greece’s supremo in the industry for three decades, particularly in the 70’s and early 80’s. Innovation had its date. He will be remembered for his business acumen and his interest for the Greek cause, particularly after the 1974 Cyprus disaster, when he stepped in to assist together with the other Greek Shipowners the then Greek statesman Karamanlis and collect money needed for Greece’s defences!

The IMIF luncheon this coming Monday is at Trinity House with Graham P Hockley, Commander Royal Navy, Secretary to The Corporation of Trinity House presenting a paper on “Trinity House on Environment and Safety”; see you there!

You can also listen to the video herebelow, log on and enjoy; have a nice weekend!

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