Brokers report the market is flooded with elderly ships for sale. For instance, at least 15 late 1990s built panamaxes are currently being circulated. However, few sales are being concluded.
The slowdown is partly due to the fact that ship finance is very hard to obtain for 20th century ships these days.
More specically, few Chinese owners have significant cash on hand to purchase ships without support from the financial system. It is the Chinese who are being targeted most with the older ships doing the rounds at the moment as the China Maritime Safety Administration will soon reduce the age limit for imported ships to a maximum of just 15 years.