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VesselsValue – Half Year Review: Trade

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VesselsValueHalf Year Review: Trade

2021 so far has been a ground breaking year for shipping and global Trade flows as the world recovers from Covid-19. Using VesselsValue’s Trade data our experts have delved into the major trends and changes seen in the last six months with sky high rates, pent up demand and congestion in the Container and Bulker markets, to sinking rates and weak oil demand in the Tanker market.

“The first six months of 2021 are a clear indication of how demand for goods and availability of tonnage directly correlates with vessel earnings. Trade flows have also shifted this year due to geopolitical tensions between Australia and China, lending to longer legs, heightened cargo miles and tightening vessel availability.

The Bulker market has made a strong recovery in 2021 so far, as demand for Dry Bulk materials has recovered post Covid resulting in strong rates. The Capesize market, typically the most volatile, printed a daily index of $44,817 in early May, which was over a 300% increase from mid February’s low of $10,304. The smaller Bulker markets have had smoother but still consistent climbs, ending the first half of the year at their highest daily rates.

The Container market has also been booming in the first two quarters, with pent up demand and a lack of available vessels leading to decade high rates. To gain a better understanding of underlying Container demand, we have compared TEU miles against the pre Covid year of 2019. January through to April 2021 were clearly strong months as pent up consumer spending on retail goods rebounded (+2.7%). May was relatively similar, then demand softened in June (-2.1%).

Tanker VLCC rates have been particularly weak, dropping to below OPEX in January, reaching a low of $-11,000 USD per day in mid March, which is over a 2000% YoY decline when compared to the same period in 2020… At the lowest point in May 2021, global cargo miles were just 30.67 DWT bn/NM, which was 17% lower than at the same point in 2020…

Read the full review here.

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