By Vassilis Moiris
Activity in dry bulk S&P market remains stable whereas values appear to have bottomed out and buyers are now willing to pay today’s market levels in anticipation of improved prices in the future. This week we noted increased activity in the Panamax sector with a couple of reported sales and with more ships inviting offers in the next couple of weeks.
The Kamsarmax ‘YATTAWONGA’ (82,624dwt-blt ’08, Tsuneishi) has been inspected by around ten buyers in China, which is evidence of strong interest in the sector. In terms of concluded sales we are hearing subjects have been lifted on the Panamax ‘ROSALI’ (76,728dwt-blt ’05, Sasebo), which is sold to Greek buyers at $9.85m, being in line with the recent sale of ‘CALHOUN’(76,801dwt-blt ’06, Sasebo) at $10,6mill to Ukrainian buyers a few weeks ago.
There is also decent activity in the Supramax sector with two TESS 58 Supramax bulkers reported sold. Following the acquisition of two Ultramax bulkers last week, c/o Pacific Basin are tipped to have bought the ‘GHENT’ (58,110dwt-blt ‘11, Tsuneishi Zhoushan) for about $14.35 - $14.5m. The ‘NORD EXPRESS’ (58,785dwt-blt ’07, Tsuneishi Cebu), has obtained $11.5m from European buyers, with both prices falling within market expectations today.
In the tanker sector activity is focusing on the MR sector although interest for crude tankers remains firm. In view of healthy freight rates in recent months there is additional confidence in the sector and as a result vessels’ values remain robust.
The Greek controlled ‘MR SIRIUS’ (46,846dwt-blt ’07, Sungdong), has been committed on two weeks subjects to European owners for a price in the region of mid-$14.0m. The older ‘STAVANGER BREEZE’ (46,780dwt-blt ’04, STX) has been sold at $8.65m to c/o Wilmar with SS/DD & BWTS due in May this year. The price appears to be in line with the sale of the sister vessel ‘SEAWAYS ALCEMAR’ (46,248dwt-blt ’04, STX), which was sold last November at region $8,25m to Greek buyers also basis surveys due.
Chartering (Wet: Soft- / Dry: Stable-)
The positive reversal in Capesize earnings last week gave a significant boost to the BDI, while as rates for the big bulkers have been moving down again yesterday and today, uncertainty continues to describe market sentiment. The BDI today (19/03/2019) closed at 712 points, down by 9 points compared to Monday’s (18/03/2019) levels and increased by 65 points when compared to previous Tuesday’s closing (12/03/2019). Further discounts in VLCC rates affected sentiment across the entire crude carriers market, while CPP rates were admittedly more upbeat. The BDTI today (19/03/2019) closed at 715, decreased by 28 points and the BCTI at 627, an increase of 47 points compared to previous Tuesday’s (12/03/2019) levels.
Sale & Purchase (Wet: Stable+ / Dry: Firm+)
SnP activity keeps firming on a weekly basis, with MR tonnage remaining particularly popular on the tanker second-hand market, while Buyers interested in dry bulk candidates continue to display increased appetite for all sizes except Capes. In the tanker sector we had the sale of the “SEA HORIZON” (298,412dwt-blt ‘01, Japan), which was sold to Singapore owner, Ocean Tankers, for a price in the region of $22.5m. On the dry bulker side sector we had the sale of the “TATSUKI MARU” (91,765dwt-blt ‘02, Japan), which was sold to Chinese buyers, for a price in the region of $8.0m.
Newbuilding (Wet: Stable+ / Dry: Stable+)
Recently reported contracting activity is reaffirming the strong momentum the newbuilding market continues to enjoy, with interest for newbuilding vessels evident in all of the more conventional sectors, while containerships orders notably have the lion’s share in the list below. The sector, that has seen an impressive increase in 2018 shipbuilding activity, with contracting more than doubling last year compared to 2017, has kicked off this year with less appetite for newbuildings. The decline in containership ordering year to date is in fact estimated at around 25%, with the less exciting freight market in 2019 negatively affecting demand for newbuilding tonnage so far. In terms of recently reported deals, Singaporean owner, Berge Bulk, placed an order for two firm Newcastlemax bulk carriers (208,000 dwt) at Bohai, in China for a price in the region of $45.0m and delivery set in 2020.
Demolition (Wet: Stable+/ Dry: Stable+)
The demolition market has seen very firm activity during the past days. The few high-priced sales that recently took place in the Indian subcontinent have increased confidence across the region, with some voices raising concern that the market might be moving ahead of itself. Saying this, average prices across the most popular demo destinations have been stable during the past week as well, while the increasing appetite of Indian cash buyers has definitely been inspired by stabilizing steel prices in the country together with a strengthening Indian Rupee. In terms of demo candidates, the majority of vessels recently sold for scrap still concerns containerships, with dry bulk vessels in second place. Average prices in the different markets this week for tankers ranged between $280-450/ldt and those for dry bulk units between $270-440/ldt.
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