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Shipping confidence reaches highest level for two and a half years
Konig & Cie, reported that shipping confidence is rising. Overall confidence levels in the shipping industry rose to their highest level for two and a half years in the three months ended May 2013, according to the latest Shipping Confidence Survey from accountancy firm Moore Stephens. The survey produced evidence of increased enthusiasm for new investment, although doubts persisted about the availability of bank finance. Fuelled by ongoing concern about a surfeit of tonnage on the market, freight rates in the dry bulk sector in particular were expected to come under more pressure over the next twelve months, although the outlook for the tanker markets looked more encouraging.
In May 2013, the average confidence level expressed by respondents in the markets in which they operate was 5.9 on a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high), compared to the figure of 5.8 recorded in the previous survey in February 2013. This is the highest figure since the 6.0 recorded in November 2010.
A number of respondents felt that there were positive signs that a recovery was under way. One said, “The shipping market is dynamic in nature, and we are starting to see signs of exponential growth,” while another predicted, “The shipping markets will continue growing over the next fifteen years!” Elsewhere the predictions were less expansive, ranging from, “The market will recover in 2014,” to, “Overall, we believe that 2013 will end up better than last year, and 2014 will show further improvement, even if some niche markets may not be able to maintain their current rate of growth.”
Despite significant increases in scrapping levels in the past eighteen months, a number of respondents felt that much more still needed to be done. “The level of new ordering is alarming,” said one, “particularly as some reports suggest that rates of scrapping may now be slowing down again.
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