Your weekly tanker podcast from CoracleBy james tweed • Nov 15th, 2013 • Category: Tankers
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Now the market news and this week saw the usual gathering of the good and the great of the VLCC market, in Dubai, for the annual Vela party. For a refreshing change, the buzz was all about the strength of the market. It has been some years since we have seen such optimism, however it must be noted that it was reserved for the short to medium term, rather than a longer term positive outlook. Having said that, we are being told, in London, that the economy is in recovery and the global outlook is bit more positive, so perhaps things really are looking up for ship owners. It is difficult to assess where the tipping point comes, between the over-tonnage situation, and the global economy gathering pace enough to return the market to significant earnings, but suffice to say we are a little closer to that point.
Due to the various gatherings in the Dubai, and the awaiting of confirmation for December stem dates, this has been a very quiet week. The odd ship has been fixed just under 270 at 60 for AG/East, as charterers have picked off the older and ex-dry dock vessels. However, the owners of well approved tonnage have bided their time, and with very few cargoes covered for the first decade of the month, they are ready for the inevitable increase in volume of enquiry. Once again, the VLCC market is under starters orders, and ready for another surge in rates, but only if the owners choose to push home their advantage, some might have forgotten how exciting things can get and next week promises to be an interesting market. There are stories of 270 at 60+ being paid, and this will be whetting owner’s appetites. Some AG/West players have chosen to fix up to 10th December, clipping off the weaker from the herd at 280 at 35, and they will be joined by the rest of the charterers shortly and a firmer market will ensue.
West Africa has again been disrupted by the absence of chartering personnel, but again, the firm sentiment continues with rates at 260 at 55, if not now closer to 60. It has been untested over the week, and perhaps only next week will the full extent of the market’s strength be tested.
The 30 day availability index shows 53 vessels arriving at Fujairah, of which six are over 15 years old, compared to last week’s total of 46. We have counted a total of 140 cargoes fixed for the month of November, and 20 for the first decade of December, so we are expecting another 30 cargoes in the first decade against a ship count of 32 marketed VLCCs and with stem date confirmation shortly, we are anticipating an exciting week next week.
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