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Weekly Broker: Q4 off with a bang

Investors’ wait-and-see approach has finally transformed into action with a strong start in S&P action in the fourth quarter. Activity has been most pronounced in the dry bulk sector, where prices for panamaxes and supramaxes are firming up in particular.

“On the dry side, a considerable boost in volumes noted during the past few days. The main focus seems to have been on panamax tonnage, closely followed by the supramax segment. A key difference however seen is that while in the panamax segment most deals involved vintage units, in supramax sector most transactions involved more modern vessels. All-in-all, given that we are starting to see some positive omens emerge in the freight market, this could well drive buyers further over the coming months,” Allied Shipbroking said in its latest weekly report.

Multiple shipbroking houses including Allied Shipbroking, Banchero Costa, Intermodal and Lorentzen & Stemoco reported the sale of the 2015-built 63,500 dwt ultramax bulker Saga Baylorcom. The Chinese-built vessel was sold by JP Morgan to Greek owner JME Navigation for a price of $22.5m. The deal will increase JME’s fleet to four bulkers.

More than eight shipbroking houses listed the sale deal of the 2008-built 58,000 dwt supramax bulker Medi Firenze. Japanese owner Yamamaru Kisen sold the Filipino–built vessel to major Indonesian owner Salam Pacific for a price of $13.8m.

Intermodal, Lorentzen & Stemoco and Andreas J. Zachariassen all reported a transaction in which Singapore owner Skelt Marine has sold its only vessel in the fleet, the 2010-built 34,500 dwt handy bulker Skelt to London-based Tufton Oceanic. The Singaporean-built vessel has fetched a price of $12.9m.

“On the tanker side, a relative gear up in activity was also noted this past week. This can be seen as mere reflection of a very active VLCC market, inline somehow with the considerable boost noted in the freight market during the same time frame. Given the opportunistic attitude that has been key in the market so far this year, we should continue to see interest hold firm for now, while this gear up in activity is still unlikely to drive any excesses in terms of pricing,” Allied Shipbroking said.

Lorentzen & Stemoco and Andreas J. Zachariassen reported that the prominent Greek shipping company Latsco has snapped up two aframax product tankers from Turkish owner Densa Denizcilik Sanayi. The two South Korean-built vessels, the 2013-built Densa Alligator and the 2015-built Densa Crocodile, have been sold for $61.5m in total.

A number of shipbroking houses reported Japanese owner Doun Kisen has sold its 2009-built 45,000 dwt MR tanker High Enterprise to a Greek owner for a price of $14.15m. Lorentzen & Stemoco has identified the buyer as Spring Marine. This marks Doun Kisen’s exit from the MR sector. Vintage specialist Spring Marine’s last acquisition was in July when it bought Vroon’s last MR tanker.

Secondhand containership sale and purchase activities are also picking up in the past week. According to Alphaliner, Cyprus Maritime is believed to have purchased two 2003-built 6,500 teu container ships from Japanese owner NYK, the NYK Aphrodite and her sister vessel NYK Artemis. The ships are due to go on charter to MSC. Braemar ACM puts a price of around $13m per ship, suggesting there has been significant softening in prices for the 6,500 teu segment of late.

Advanced Shipping & Trading and Intermodal both reported a deal in which Japanese owner Nissen Kaiun bought two 2012-built 13,092 teu vessels, the Maersk Edirne and the Maersk Eureka from Maersk for a price of $46m each. The two vessels will be chartered back to Maersk.

Jason Jiang

Jason is one of the most prolific writers on the diverse China shipping & logistics industry and his access to the major maritime players with business in China has proved an invaluable source of exclusives. Having been working at Asia Shipping Media since inception, Jason is the chief correspondent of Splash and associate editor of Maritime CEO magazine. Previously he had written for a host of titles including Supply Chain Asia, Cargo Facts and Air Cargo Week.
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