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Improving U.S. Freight Transportation System

The Panel on 21st Century Freight Transportation published its final report on United States freight transportation, offering an assessment of its current condition with recommendations for strengthening nationwide infrastructure and U.S. economy. The panel, led by its Chairman, U.S. Rep John J. Duncan, Jr. (R-TN) and Ranking Member Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), was founded by Full Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) and Ranking Member Nick J. Rahall, II (D-W.Va.) in April 2013 to examine U.S. freight transportation, the role it plays on the nation’s economy and ways in which it may be improved, including financially, structurally and technologically. The Freight Panel offered to Congress a list of suggestions to “safely and efficiently meet the needs of freight movement in the 21st century:” Direct the Secretary of Transportation, in coordination with the Secretary of the Army and the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, to establish a comprehensive national freight transportation policy and designate a national, multimodal freight network; Ensure robust public investment in all modes of transportation on which freight movement relies, and incentivize additional private investment in freight transportation facilities, to maintain and improve the condition and performance of the freight transportation network;

Crude Oil Tanker Market Weakened, says OPEC

Graph provided by OPEC

 Crude oil tanker market sentiment weakened in April as average spot freight rates dropped on most reported routes, OPEC said in its latest monthly report.   On average, dirty tanker freight rates were down 8% from the month before.  Despite a stronger market seen in the VLCC sector, average dirty spot freight rates declined, influenced by the declines in Suezmax and Aframax freight rates.   

Shipbrokers, Oil Brokerage House Form Freight Forwards

BraemarTankers Ltd., Galbraith's Ltd., E.A.Gibson Shipbrokers Ltd., PVM Oil Associates Ltd. and Seascope Shipping Ltd. have formed Global Freight Forwards Limited. The company has been created initially to broker forward freight swaps for the tanker market segment in key trade routes. Contracts have been devised to meet multi-client needs and in response to Owners' and Charterers' requirements for freight protection without taking physical delivery.

World Container Index (WCI) to launch in September

Drewry Shipping Consultants and The Cleartrade Exchange announced that the World Container Index (WCI), the first Europe-based assessment of container freight rates and index production, is scheduled for launch in September 2011. The index will be designed to provide a new and important facility for the global market to hedge their freight rate risk and see major improvements in forward price discovery through the container derivatives market.

Logistics Confidence Index Again on the Increase

Stifel Nicolaus Logistics Confidence Index suggests the current market remains weak, however the outlook is increasingly positive. The Stifel Nicolaus Logistics Confidence Index increased for the third consecutive month in January 2013, according to the latest industry study undertaken by Transport Intelligence. The overall index, an average of the current and expected situation, increased 0.8 points to 48.8 from 48.0 in the last month of 2012.

Asia to Northern Europe Shipping Rates Jump 177%

Photo by Maersk Line

 Asia to Northern Europe shipping freight rates for transporting containers jumped by 177.3 percent to $1.109 per 20-foot container (TEU) in the week ended on Friday, reports Reuters, quoting data from the Shanghai Shipping Exchange.   As all major container shipping lines implemented a price hike announced earlier, the  freight rates rose nearly three-fold.   Freight rates on the world’s busiest shipping route have tanked this year due to overcapacity in

IRS Changes Freight Tax Exemption

The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final, temporary and proposed regulations recently that significantly change certain requirements to claim the exemption from freight tax. In addition, the regulations clarify that certain activities will be treated as "incidental" to international shipping operations, meaning that income from these incidental activities can qualify for the exemption from freight tax. (Source: HK

Crowley Merges Jarvis International Freight into Crowley Logistics


Business Unit to Now Offer Project Logistics and Global Freight Management Services to New Industries and more Geographic Locations. Crowley Maritime Corporation announced today that its recently acquired Houston-based, freight forwarding, export packing and logistics company, Jarvis International Freight, Inc., will transition into the company as a new branch of Crowley Logistics, offering project logistics and global freight management services to a wider array of industries and in more

Free App Makes Freight Markets Mobile


Freight Investor Services (FIS), a broker of freight and commodity swaps, launched a mobile app that puts the freight and commodity swaps market in the hands of users, wherever they are. The app combines indicative market prices across the main freight and commodity groups with powerful graphing to display forward curves and historical spot prices. Also included are FIS daily reports for all markets, including closing curves, commentaries, spreads and ratios.

Halonen Named COO, Greencarrier Freight Services

Jarmo Halonen Photo Greencarrier Freight Services

Greencarrier Freight Services has promoted Jarmo Halonen to the role of Chief Operating Officer, with combined responsibility for the company’s air, ocean, road and rail freight activities. This is the first time the four modes have been brought under the control of one director.   Mr Halonen, formerly Group Director Road Freight, says: “We felt that it was important to bring together all the services we offer to ensure we can focus on our international growth and strengthen

Moore Stephens: 4th Straight Year of Operating Costs Decline

Richard Greiner (Photo: Moore Stephens)

International accountant and shipping consultant Moore Stephens says total annual operating costs in the shipping industry fell by an average of 2.4% in 2015.   This compares with the 0.8% average fall in costs recorded for 2014, and is the fourth successive overall year-on-year reduction

Excess Tonnage Weighs on Asia Dry Bulk-Capesize Rates

File image: a so-called ValeMax bulk carrier (Credit: Vale)

Capesize market "absolutely dead" on Thursday - broker. Vale says no new cargoes but owners sail empty vessels to Brazil. Freight rates for large capesize dry cargo ships on key Asian routes will continue to fall next week as too many ships chase available cargoes

Container Shipping Industry Calls for Climate Action

Pic: Business for Social Responsibility

 Members of BSR’s Clean Cargo Working Group (CCWG) have agreed on a climate action statement and call to action for the container shipping sector and its value chain to support private-sector contributions for the global goals on climate change.   

Hanjin Talks on Long Beach Sale

Photo: Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd

 Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd is in talks to sell its stake in the Long Beach Terminal in California to Geneva-based Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A.(MSC), reports Reuters.   The court overseeing Hanjin's receivership says the company is negotiating with MSC

Drewry Finds Risk of Carrier Failure Still High

Figure 1

Drewry’s Z-score carrier financial stress index sunk to its lowest ever point following the first-half 2016 results. After Hanjin’s bankruptcy shippers are demanding more financial transparency from carriers. There is still much work to be done to clean up the logistical chaos

147 Vessels Sent to Shipbreaking

Photo: NGO Shipbreaking Platform

 So far this year 147 vessels have been sent to the shipbreakers for their steel to be recycled, Telegraph reported quoting new data from Braemar ACM shows.   A record number of container ships have been scrapped this year as owners battle a perfect storm of vast overcapacity and

Gibdock Performs Quick Freight Ferry Repair

Photo: Gibdock

Gibdock has redelivered the Seatruck Ferries container/ro-ro vessel Clipper Point on-time, after a fast turnaround 11-day renewal project for the Clipper Group-owned operator. The ship has subsequently been introduced to Seatrucks’ Irish Sea operations.  

Asia Dry Bulk-Capesize Rates could slide as Tonnage Outweighs Demand

A typical Capesize Bulker (credit: BSM)

Many vessels available for charter put pressure on freight rates. Freight rates for large capesize dry cargo ships on key Asian routes are set to slide next week as the number of ships available for charter outpaced cargo demand, ship brokers said on Thursday.

Syria Makes Major Wheat Deal with Russia

Syria's state grain buying agency Hoboob struck a deal to purchase one million tonnes of Russian wheat from political ally Russia, covering the needs of government-controlled areas for a year. The Damascus government subsidises bread for the areas it controls ensuring the supply of flat loaves

Freight Futures Market Avoids Tougher EU Information Disclosures

The European Union's securities markets regulator has dropped proposals to make participants in the multi-billion dollar commodity derivatives market for freight rates disclose knowledge of loading conditions, the Baltic Exchange said.  

VLCC Rates to Hold Firm as Owners Await MidEast Cargoes

File photo: Euronav

Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs), which rose to multi-month highs this week, are likely to hold firm as owners tread water before the release of further Middle-East and West Africa cargoes, ship brokers said on Friday.  

Florida's First Ocean-to-Air Transhipment

Innovative programs such as this one also help  business community strengthen ties within the global marketplace Photo Crowley

Already the busiest port of entry in America for international air freight, Miami International Airport will soon be able to receive perishable freight imports by sea as well – a first for any Florida airport – through a permit approved in September by the U.S

Hyundai Mulls Bid for Hanjin Assets, Routes

Photo: Hanjin Shipping

Hyundai Merchant Marine is considering bidding for its bigger local rival Hanjin Shipping Co.'s Asia-U.S. route, reports Yonhap.   Hyundai Merchant, currently under a creditor-led debt restructuring scheme, is planning to submit a preliminary bid for Hanjin Shipping's route

CMA CGM Suspends Terminal Handling Charges in Ghana

Photo: CMA CGM

 CMA CGM informed its customers that the collection of Terminal Handling Charges (THC), which was introduced in Ghana on July 20th, 2016, has been temporarily suspended, effective October 4th, 2016.   CMA CGM will communicate on the resumption in due course.  

Container Shipping Market has Bottomed Out

Photo: CMA CGM

Hanjin’s receivership represents the trough of the container shipping market and despite continuing concerns of weak trade growth and fleet oversupply a gradual market recovery is now expected, according to the latest annual Container Forecaster and Review 2016/17 report published by global

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