Commercial analysis




Argus Media: Iranian liquids exports reach record 3mn b/d

Our friends at Argus Media recently reported that Iranian crude and condensate exports have reached a new record – with their kind permission, we reproduce their report here in full. Iranian crude and condensate exports exceeded 3mn b/d in the final days of the Iranian calendar month of Esfand (19 February to 20 March), in line with state expectations. Liquids exports hit 3.05mn b/d, of which...... Login to view this article


Poten & Partners: Tight Oil Unleashed – international tanker market set to benefit

In April 2015, US crude oil production reached 9.627 million barrels per day (mb/d). This was the highest production level since the early 1970s, when US crude oil output briefly exceeded 10 mb/d. One of the biggest differences between production in the 1970s and now is the source of the crude oil. Substantially all of the US production 45 years ago came from regular onshore fields in the Lower...... Login to view this article


MSI Tanker Market Outlook Q1 2017

Tanker markets have moved unequivocally downwards in the first two months of 2017. Given the weakness seen in Q3, some seasonal retreat appeared inevitable as spot markets ascended in Q4. Fluctuations in the spot market have been abrupt with the range of rates seen over 2016 encompassing most of the extremes of an envelope typically seen over a full cycle. Judging where we are in the tanker cyc...... Login to view this article


IEA: Oil demand to outstrip supply if funding for new projects not approved

The Paris Based International Energy Agency (IEA) has said in its latest five-year oil market forecast that global oil supply could struggle to keep pace with demand after 2020, risking a sharp increase in prices, unless new projects are approved soon. The global picture appears comfortable for the next three years but supply growth slows considerably after that, according to Oil 2017, the IEA’...... Login to view this article


McQuilling releases 20th Anniversary edition of its Tanker Market Outlook

McQuilling Services, the marine transportation consulting and advisory group of McQuilling Partners Inc, has issued the 20th Anniversary edition 2017-2021 of its Tanker Market Outlook. This 200-page report provides a five-year spot and time charter equivalent (TCE) outlook for eight vessel classes across 19 benchmark tanker trades, plus two triangulated trades. The report also includes a robust...... Login to view this article


Gibson Ship Brokers: Recycling totals climb slowly in 2016

Without the sale of two VLCCs in the final quarter of last year, tanker deadweight recycling totals would have been only slightly above the 2015 final figure. In deadweight terms tonnage sold for demolition in 2016 amounted to 2.46 million tonnes, just 33 units (25,000 dwt+). Once again healthy earnings across most tanker sectors did little to encourage scrapping. The extremely young age profil...... Login to view this article


Moore Stephens: Shipping confidence hits 15-month high

Shipping confidence improved for the third successive quarter in the three months to end-November 2016, according to the latest Shipping Confidence Survey from accountant and shipping adviser Moore Stephens. In November 2016, the average confidence level expressed by respondents was 5.6 out of 10.0, equalling the highest rating since August 2015. All categories of respondents expressed increase...... Login to view this article


LNG Markets: Asian spot LNG in largest monthly surge since February 13 peak

LNG demand from China and South Korea, as well as Australian supply outages, helped raise East Asian spot LNG prices to the largest month-on-month gain since the peak of the last super cycle in February 2013. The ICIS January 17 East Asia Index (EAX) was assessed for the final time at $9.20/MMBtu on 15 December, climbing $1.95/MMBtu since becoming the front month on 16 November. It was the...... Login to view this article


Reuters: Oil prices surge, trading volume records smashed as OPEC and Russia agree output cut

Crude oil prices steadied around $50 a barrel on Thursday, holding onto most of the big gains made after OPEC and Russia agreed to restrict production, even as analysts warned other producers were likely to top up supply. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed on Wednesday its first oil output reduction since 2008 after de-facto leader Saudi Arabia accepted "a big hit" and...... Login to view this article


Poten & Partners: Worldscale 2017 flat rates will be down due lower bunker prices

As we are approaching the end of another eventful year in the tanker market, owners and charterers alike are waiting for the new Worldscale (WS) book to arrive in the mail (or, more likely, become available on the internet). Starting on the first trading day of 2017, Monday 2 January, tanker market participants will start to transition from the 2016 Worldscale rates to the 2017 rates. The chang...... Login to view this article


IEA warns of oil price fall if supply glut persists

Oil prices could fall next year if the supply surplus persists, according to the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA). The energy watchdog also expects Opec’s Vienna meeting on 30 November to have “a major impact on the eventual – and oft-postponed – rebalancing of the oil market” whatever its outcome. “If the Opec countries do implement their Algiers resolution, the resultant producti...... Login to view this article


Tanker ordering in otherwise mild newbuilding activity

While newbuilding activity remains subdued overall, shipbrokers have started noticing some mild activity in the tanker department. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Allied Shipbroking notes that “there was another small trickle of tanker orders emerging this week, with most notable the order secured by S. Korea’s Samsung for two separate high spec orders by Norway’s Viken Shipping (2...... Login to view this article


Adieu – a short market review after 30 years with INTERTANKO

Everything must come to an end. I have been with INTERTANKO for more than 30 years – too long… far too long. During this time I have been following several tanker market cycles. It has been like continuously feeling the pulse of world politics and economy. It is the dramatic turning points we are looking for but hardly ever can see, we just know they are coming. I have used many sources to try...... Login to view this article


The fleet is increasing…

Sales for scrapping have been meagre so far in 2016, one VLCC, one aframax, six MRs, and two smaller tankers. The newest tanker sold was the VLCC Faridah built in 1995, which was actually an FSO. Deliveries are, on the other hand, increasing. McQuilling expects the following to be delivered this year: 61 VLCCs, 41 suezmaxes, 41 aframaxes, 29 LR2s, 6 panamaxes, 28 LR1s, and 68 MRs.   The light...... Login to view this article


Employment old/new VLCCs

By using we have looked at the 115 VLCCs we have recorded as being built up to 2000. The below graph shows that many of these are not trading, 16% were anchored in ballast, 24% anchored laden probably many used for storage, 15% were in a stopped position, 9% were moored, and just under 36% were reported to be under way at an average speed of 11.4 knots.   To compar...... Login to view this article


NITC fleet yet to fully operate in active trading

One of the wild cards this year has been the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) 13.6 m dwt tanker fleet, which has largely been inactive and used for storage. The fleet, which we know includes 37 VLCCs, nine suezmaxes, five aframaxes and three smaller tankers appears to have an additional five vessels we cannot find any trading record for. When we look at the current activity of this fleet...... Login to view this article


US crude oil stocks at an all-time high

US Crude oil stocks are at an all-time high, as is illustrated in the graph below: US crude oil imports up until 15 April were the highest since 2012 for this period. OECD total stocks stood at 100 days’ forward use the last quarter of 2015 compared to 93 days for the same period in 2014 and 91 days for the same quarter in 2013. China growing its reserves China increased its strategic reserves ...... Login to view this article


DNB predicts good LPG summer market

DNB says in its latest market report that the summer season could lead to a spike in rates, as the firm believes current fleet utilisation is high. Inventory draws should push 2016 US LPG exports to another all-time high, while US propane dehydrogenation (PDH) facilities are likely to disincentive propane consumption in US steam-crackers, boosting the amount of LPG available for export, which...... Login to view this article


IEA monthly report: Non-OPEC production declining

The Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA) has released its latest monthly report. Here we present the pertinent points contained within. Growth in global oil demand will ease to around 1.2 mbd in 2016, below 2015’s 1.8 mbd expansion , as notable decelerations take hold across China, the US and much of Europe. Preliminary 1Q16 data reveal this is already occurring, with year-on-year grow...... Login to view this article


Spotlight on suezmaxes

It has been VLCCs that have benefitted the most from the surge in the tanker market this year, while suezmaxes have so far this year fallen marginally behind the aframaxes according to the benchmark routes we are following. The main suezmax trade is West Africa to Europe. According to Fearnleys, suezmax tonne-miles ended at a soft 0.7% growth last year. Volumes traded grew by a strong 6.7%...... Login to view this article

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Bill Box
Senior Manager, Commercial
P: +44 20 7977 7023