The LNG tanker market has seen improving rates over the past couple of months, after a somewhat sluggish 22H1. But the big story in this sector has been record-high ordering, with the orderbook now representing almost 50% of the fleet size. Despite healthy projections for LNG trade, significant fleet growth is expected to weigh down on fleet utilization in the latter part of our forecast.
Although VLGC rates have drifted lower over the past six weeks, they should hold at relatively healthy levels through 2023. The combination of steady demand growth and a moderate orderbook should lead to a modestly stronger market over the 2024-26 period.
Generally things are changing fast for some of the major sectors with the tanker market is seeing some of the biggest shifts:
VLCC rates experiencing a long-awaited surge.
Marsoft sees this pattern continuing over the next year or so, as the fallout from Russia-Ukraine war leads to shifting trading patterns, which are boosting tonne-mile demand.
In contrast, dry bulk rates have moved lower across all sectors over the past months – weak steel demand and a dip in port delays.
European coal imports are a wild card over the coming year, as they could increase significantly the more Russian gas supplies to Europe are cut off.
In the containership market, most publicly listed liner operators and charter-vessel companies reported new record-high profits for 22Q2, as vessel availability remained extremely tight and helped sustain rates near historical-highs.
But cracks appeared in the containership market, and by mid-August, liner spot freight rates had lost 30% of their year-start values.
Marsoft sees that with weakening economic conditions and softening global demand, delays and port congestion are likely to adjust lower sooner than later. In turn, this should lead to further correction in rates and asset prices.
To get the full picture contact one of our offices – we would be happy to discuss all this and our groundbreaking developments – Marsoft GreenScreen™ and Marsoft Navigator – with you and your colleagues.