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HANSA 01-2020

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Märkte | Markets

Märkte | Markets Market lacklustre but stable at year-end No rate-slashing for charter vessels as challenging year draws to a close. Early rebound in charter demand expected for 2020. By Michael Hollmann Hire rates for container charter vessels remained fairly static in the final weeks of 2019, defying normal seasonal patterns of heavier losses during the fourth quarter. Market indices such as the New ConTex and the Howe Robinson Containership Index recorded only marginal falls over the past weeks and will finish the year on a significantly higher level than 2018 – at around +5.0% (New Con- Tex) and +26.0%, respectively. The increases are based on improved fixing levels especially for post-panamax and panamax-type vessels which benefited from liner requirements to replace ships taken out of service for scrubber retrofit. Although fixing activity began to slow from late November, according to brokers, rate levels continued to be supported by tight tonnage availability in the larger sectors. This tightness mainly results from the ongoing high levels of retrofit activity, with the total number of ships withdrawn from trading for scrubber installations reaching 102 as per 9 December, according to Alphaliner. They represent 950,000 TEU or 4% of worldwide fleet capacity. As a result, the spot supply of ships in the larger sectors, which are responsible for the bulk of scrubber installations, even trended down over the past weeks. On 16 December, Alphaliner counted 10 vessels in spot position in the segments from 4,000 TEU upwards, against 13 on 2 December and 17 on 18 November. Chartering activity remained sporadic for larger tonnage although by middle of December there was a growing chorus among brokers who suggested that enquiry for bigger ships was already on the increase, mainly for forward delivery in January/February. The few fixtures and extensions that leaked through signalled a stabilisation of rates, with one 6,000 TEU unit – the »E. R. Los Angeles« – fetching 19,000 $/day for 4-6 month period with OOCL in Asia. Further, there were rumours of one 8,500 TEU vessel, coming open at the end of December following scrubber retrofit, and one Imabari 6300 type getting fixed. Details did not get available, but the fact that Howe Robinson lifted its charter assessment for gearless 6,500 TEU type vessels by 11% week-on-week on 18 December suggests that last-done levels have been outstripped by far. Demand for wide-beam panamax vessels seemed to pick up again as well following a slack period in November when In unserem Portal HANSA+ vereinen wir eine Übersicht wichtiger Kennzahlen der Märkte. Sichern Sie sich den Zugriff auf Fracht- und Charterraten in der Container-, Bulk- und Tank schifffahrt, Bunkerpreise, MPP-, Shortsea- und Umschlagindizes, Ölpreise und vieles mehr … Erfahren Sie mehr über alle Optionen jederzeit unter www.hansa-online.de. some ships got bunched up in spot positions resulting in sharp rate falls. Latest available fixture data signals a slight recovery to 19,000 $/day net of address commission for 5,400 TEU wide-beam vessels. Brokers say that spot availability has dropped to zero again. Meanwhile the panamax segment continues to see a steady flow of requirements from liner operators, resulting in an average of 4 ships fixing or extending employments week after week. Rate levels began to decline somewhat in December, though, illustrated by latest fixtures of baby panamax units at mid-13,000’s $/day (down from 14,000) and of maxipanamaxes at 12,000 $/day (down from 13,000). However, spot supply looks manageable at around 10 units and is set to tighten quickly once tonnage demand picks up, brokers say. There are rumours that two 5,000 TEU panamaxes, equipped with scrubbers, are about to be fixed at ,000 per day for two-year periods, heralding a firmer trend. Below 4,000 TEU, the market was again described as being »uninspiring«, with diverging trends in activity levels, but rates merely moving sideways or slightly easing. The 3,400 TEU segment was notable for a drop in fixing volumes, so were the geared 2,500 TEU and the geared 1,700 TEU segments which previously registered a relatively strong flow of fixtures. Yet, rate levels for geared 2,500 TEU ships kept stable at around ,000 per day both east and west of Suez so far. In the 1,700 TEU segment, owners seem to bow to the growing pressure as highlighted by recent fixtures of geared Wenchong 1700 type ships at 8,300 $/day, down from 8,500 $/day. One German broker suggested that service consolidation among intra-Asian carriers would result in increased redeliveries over the coming weeks. For feeder ships of 1,000-1,200 TEU, the picture was unchanged in the Asian market, with CV 1100’s achieving ,000 and 1,134 TEU Orskov type ships ,500. The smallest classes below 1,000 TEU benefited from increased short-period and extra loader requirements, related in part to bad weather and schedule delays in Asia and to new transhipment requirements in Europe due to the resumption of one Far East/Europe deepsea service. Global spot availability in the 500-1,000 TEU segments dropped to just 8 vessels by 16 December, according to Alphaliner. Yet, rate levels remained unchanged. Market expectations for smaller charter vessels are still moderately positive for 2020, with one major broker stating that tonnage availability two months forward is the lowest it has been in years. Others suggested that the transition to low-sulphur fuels (IMO 2020) might prompt operators to reduce sailing speeds for feeder vessels to cut fuel costs. Scrubber installations are the exception in the segments below 3,000 TEU, so ships will be forced to burn the much more expensive lowsulphur fuel oil or marine gas oil. n 8 HANSA International Maritime Journal 01 | 2020

Orders & Sales New Orders Container Contracting activity remained at a low level. In the ULCS segment, Evergreen has officially placed an order for four 23,888 TEU ships, fitted with scrubbers. Two of them will be built at Jiangnan Shipyard and two at Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard. The price is 5 m each. Secondhand Sales Container Activity picked up with clear interest in mid-size and post-panamax units, the ratio of enbloc deals was particularly high. Seaspan purchased »APL Paris/Dublin/Southampton« (10,700 TEU, Daewoo 2012). The deal also encompassed »APL Vancouver/ New York/Mexico City« (9,200 TEU, Daewoo 2013), acquired from China Merchants Bank for 0 m. Euroseas purchased four 4,253 TEUs in a cash and share deal worth m. In the feeder segment only three sales were concluded. One included »CFS Pacatu«, sold for m to Contships. Demolition Sales The world market price for iron ore oscillates around 92 $/t. Local steel prices in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh increased. This contributed to a slight improvement in demolition activity. Quite active were Indian yards. The highest price achieved »Spirit of Manila« (2,260 TEU, 2000) at 5/ldt, which is significantly above the current market levels. JG Container ship t / c market 450 400 350 18.06.19 Container freight market WCI Shanghai-Rotterdam 1,913 $/FEU + 22.3 % WCI Shanghai-Los Angeles 1,519 $/FEU + 8.5 % Dry cargo / Bulk 17.12.19 Month on Month 437 • - 1.0 % Baltic Dry Index 1281 - 1.8 % Spot time charter averages ($/day) Capesize 5TC average 16,566 - 16.4 % Panamax 4TC average (74k) 11,383 + 27.0 % Supramax 10TC average (58k) 9,220 + 13.9 % Handysize 6TC average 7,386 + 1.6 % Forward / ffa front month Jan’20 ($/day) Capesize 180k 14,056 - 31.3 % Panamax 74k 9,009 - 4.6 % MPP December ’18 $ 7,518 Märkte | Markets TMI Toepfer’s Multipurpose Index December ’19 $ 7,554 12,500 tdw MPP/HL »F-Type« vessel for a 6-12 months TC Tankers Shortsea / Coaster Norbroker 3,500 dwt earnings est. 3,400 €/d + 0.0 % HC Shortsea Index 18.85 + 3.1 % ISTFIX Shortsea Index 544 + 2.0 % Norbroker: spot t/c equivalent assessment basis round voyage North Sea/Baltic; HC Shipping & Chartering index tracking spot freights on 5 intra-European routes; Istfix Istanbul Freight Index covering spot freight ex Black Sea Bunkers COMPASS Baltic Dirty Tanker Index 1509 + 26.4 % Baltic Clean Tanker Index 901 + 29.4 % VLSFO 0.5 Rotterdam $/t 544 + 19.0 % MGO Rotterdam $/t 586 + 7.5 % Forward / Swap price Q1 / 20 IFO 380 Rotterdam $/t 241 + 14.7 % Data per 18.12.2019, Alterations within four weeks Wir danken unseren Mitgliedern, Kunden und Geschäftspartnern für die Zusammenarbeit in 2019 und wünschen alles Gute für 2020. HANSA International Maritime Journal 01 | 2020 9

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