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For once, why not be an optimist?

Predictions for shipping’s 2021 performance now look to have been overly bearish. Our special correspondent asks if years of pain mean we are just hard wired to be cautious

In one of the most capital-intensive industries on Earth, forecasting future shipping earnings is something shareholders would rightly expect management to have a handle on. This month’s announcement that the annual contest to estimate where the Clarksea Index - a barometer for all the main shipping segments - would stand on November 5 was notable for the fact that the closest guess was over 20% below the $35,719 that was actually recorded on the day. Clarksons, the venerable London shipbroker ...

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