Marine Link
Friday, May 25, 2018

Stable Oil Prices News

Oil Up as U.S., China hit the Trade War Pause Button

Oil prices rose on Monday as markets reacted to news that China and the United States have put a looming trade war between the world's two biggest economies "on hold". Brent crude futures were at $79.13 per barrel at 0121 GMT, up 62 cents, or 0.8 percent, from their last close. Brent broke through $80 for the first time since November 2014 last week. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $71.83 a barrel, up 55 cents, or 0.8 percent, from their last settlement. The U.S. trade war with China is "on hold" after the world's largest economies agreed to drop their tariff threats while they work on a wider trade agreement, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Sunday, giving global markets a lift in early trading on Monday.

China and Shifting Seaborne Iron Ore Dynamics

Photo: © icarmen13/Adobe Stock

The seaborne iron ore market appears to be in something of a sweet spot currently, with largely steady demand and prices that have been flatlining for the past couple of months. Of course, another way of saying that a market is enjoying relatively stable and good times is that it's boring, but in iron ore there is plenty of action bubbling beneath the seemingly calm exterior. It's not so much that iron ore prices or volumes are expected to shift dramatically in the coming months, it's more that structural changes in the world's biggest importer, China, are re-shaping how the industry works.

DP World Jeddah Upgrades to Navis N4

Navis, a part of Cargotec Corporation, announced that DP World Jeddah has upgraded from Navis SPARCS to N4 3.5 terminal operating system (TOS). The implementation of the updated TOS is a move by the terminal to leverage the latest technology to meet continuous customer service demands and address the need for increasing operational support as incoming cargo volume rises. DP World operates the South Container Terminal (SCT) at Jeddah Islamic Port, a crucial link in the world’s busiest East-West trade routes through the Red Sea and catering to a rich domestic cargo base. The port is the main import destination for Saudi Arabia, handling 59 percent of its imports by sea and serving its main commercial centers.

China's Crude Oil Futures Boom Amid Looming Iran Sanctions

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

A U.S. decision to reimpose sanctions on Iran is supporting China's newly established crude oil futures, and may spur efforts to start trading oil in yuan rather than dollars, traders and analysts said.Since launching in March, Shanghai crude oil futures have seen a steady pick-up in daily trading, while open interest - the number of outstanding longer-term positions and a gauge of institutional interest - has also surged.Traded daily volumes hit a record 250,000 lots last Wednesday…

The U.S. Gulf Market: When Will It Turn Around?

Discussions around our office and with various clients usually entail an exchange of anecdotal information believed to explain the current situation with the quest to predict when things will turn around. There are a host of different viewpoints, most seemingly relevant, but no one satisfactory answer. In previous downturns in the offshore service sector, there was usually a fairly clear understanding embraced by most of why things were slow. This downturn is more difficult to understand. Back in 1998 when the Asian financial crisis impacted oil prices, it was easy to see why E&P fell. This downturn also affected most oil fields around the world about the same. The price of oil was too low to drill new wells and upgrade production at a profit.

CN Plans to Ship Crude in Late 2018 at Favorable Pricing

Photo: Canadian National Railway Co

Canadian National Railway Co plans to use some additional capacity expected at the end of 2018 for its crude business, which it plans to "lock in for some time" at "very favorable pricing," the company's Chief Financial Officer said on Wednesday. "We've taken the opportunity...as capacity will come in in the second half of the year to actually lock in crude business at very favorable pricing and to lock it in for some time with some volume commitments," CN CFO Ghislain Houle said at the Wolfe Research transportation conference.

Maersk Line Introduces Bunker Surcharge

File Image: CREDIT Maersk

The world's largest container shipping company Maersk Line is increasing prices because of a surge in the cost of bunker fuel. The shipping fuel has become increasingly costly as global crude oil prices have returned to peaks not reached since 2014, lifted by the United States' exit this month from the landmark nuclear deal with Iran and imposed sanctions against the OPEC member. Now Maersk has decided to introduce a so-called "emergency bunker surcharge", taking effect from June 1.

France's CMA CGM Sets Surcharge to Offset Fuel Price Surge

Photo: CMA CGM

French shipping group CMA CGM said on Friday it would introduce an exceptional surcharge after its first quarter earnings were hit by a sharp rise in bunker fuel prices.The move comes after Maersk Line, the world's largest container shipping company, announced a similar "emergency bunker surcharge" earlier on Friday.CMA CGM, one of the world's biggest container lines, did not detail the amount of the surcharge, nor the date of its implementation.Oil prices hit their highest since late 2014 at $80.50 a barrel this month…

Hansson Sees Positive Outlook for NAO

Photo: NAO

Nordic American Offshore Ltd. (NAO) executive chairman, Herbjørn Hansson, has increased his ownership in the company, purchasing an additional 50,000 NAO shares with his son, Alexander, yesterday at about $7.83 per share. In a letter to NAO shareholders, Hansson shared thoughts on the progress the company has made since first being listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in June 2014, entering the Platform Supply Vessel (PSV) market against high, stable oil prices and record investment levels in the offshore segment.

OPEC Heads Plan Summit To Discuss Oil Market

Senior oil ministry officials from OPEC's 11 member states will meet Nov. 17 in Vienna to prepare a rare summit of the cartel's heads of state and discuss the oil market outlook, an OPEC spokesman said. "They will flesh out the agenda for the heads of state summit and discuss the medium-term objective for OPEC, the oil market situation, supply and demand," said Farouk Muhammed, spokesman for the Vienna-based OPEC secretariat. The meeting will be followed in early December by talks in Caracas of senior diplomats and oil ministry officials, plus OPEC Secretary-General Rilwanu Lukman, to complete preparatory work for the summit on March 30. OPEC oil ministers are expected to hold their next full conference in Caracas on March 27, to review a 12-month agreement to cut production.

MOL Group Q1 Shows Robust Earnings Growth

North Sea block. Photo: MOL Group

MOL Group announced its financial results for Q1 2017 in which all business segments – Upstream, Downstream, Consumer Services, Gas Midstream – managed to increase their contributions compared with the same period of the previous year. Upstream EBITDA surged year-on-year by 50% and reached USD 219mn capitalizing on higher oil prices and the very competitive asset base. Production remained stable at 111,500 barrels of oil equivalent per day. Downstream posted an all-time high first quarter clean CCS EBITDA delivering USD 324 mn, which is 15% higher than in the same period of the previous year.

Optimistic Forecast for North Sea Drilling

Deloitte Logo

North Sea drilling activity remains steady, with a positive forecast for the next two quarters, according to a new report into offshore activity from Deloitte, the business advisory firm. The report, compiled by Deloitte’s Petroleum Services Group (PSG) found that although the number of new wells drilled on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) has fallen slightly in comparison to the same period last year, the level of exploratory activity remains healthy. A total of 16 exploration…

Jaya Reports $46.1 Million Full Year Net Profit

Jaya Valour (Photo: Jaya)

Jaya Holdings Limited reported consolidated revenue of $201.8 million and net profit of $46.1 million for the financial year ended 30 June 2013. The group’s total revenue for the financial year under review was $201.8 million, 145% higher than the previous financial year. The increase in the group’s revenue was due to increased vessel sales and improved charter utilization. The Offshore Support Services (OSS) Division’s higher revenue for the financial year under review was due to improved utilization of 80% compared to 70% a year ago.

Bourbon Posts Weak First Half Results

PSV Bourbon Explorer 501 (Photo courtesy of Bourbon)

Bourbon published its first half results for 2014, recording adjusted revenues up 8.9% at constant rates, reflecting an increase in the size of the fleet, despite a lower utilization rate (adjusted revenues increased 1.5% at current rates). Adjusted EBITDAR as a percentage of adjusted revenues, remained at a stable level of 34.4% following good cost control over the period, while adjusted EBIT decreased more than 50% largely due to €41.8 million increase in bareboat charter costs year on year, not fully offset by capital gains.

IEA Reacts to OPEC Decision

leave production levels unchanged. markets and stable competitive petroleum prices. in December”, Tanaka stressed. “Our concern is that there are uncertainties that surround the sustainability of some of that supply, and winter demand is as variable as the weather.

Possibly the Worst Quarter on Zero DSV Utilisation

Pic:  Pacific Radiance Ltd

According to a research note released today from UOB Kay Hian, Singapore offshore vessel operator Pacific Radiance achieved an ominous vessel utilization of 0% for its diving support vessel fleet in the second quarter of 2015. "OSV activities are recovering on more stable oil prices but E&P spending cuts are hampering a strong rebound. There is also 0 utilization for DSV segment in 2Q15," says the note. Pacific Radiance is talking delivery of 6 vessels in 2H15 instead of 8, which is in response to the low tender activity for OSV vessels.

South Korean Shipyards Aim More Orders

Phto: Samsung Heavy Industries

South Korean shipyards have sharply raised their order targets for next year on expectations that the shipbuilding sector will improve, Yonhap reported. The country's three major shipyards - Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI), Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME),  and Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) - are looking at improving business conditions  on the back of a recovery in the global economy and stable oil prices. The report quoted industry sources saying that HHI is targeting US$13.2 billion worth of new orders next year, up 76 percent from this year's $7.5 billion.

Bourbon Revenues Rise in 2013

Photo: Bourbon

Revenues up 10.5% vs. full year 2012 to €1.312 billion and up 6.0% vs. fourth quarter 2012 to €331.6 million impacted by U.S. •    Foreign currency movements versus the Euro in 2013 (most notably versus the U.S. “2013 revenues of more than €1.3 billion, a complete range of 485 vessels with an average age of 6.2 years and the broad geographical reach of its activities makes Bourbon a leader in the offshore marine services industry,” said Christian Lefèvre, Chief Executive Officer of Bourbon.

Moody's Changes Hapag-Lloyd to Positive

Photo: Hapag-Lloyd

Moody’s Investors Service (Moody’s) changed the rating for German Container shipping company Hapag-Lloyd to positive from stable, thanks to cheaper fuel. According to  Moody’s the outlook on the B2 corporate family rating (CFR), the B2-PD probability of default rating (PDR) and the Caa1 senior unsecured rating of Hapag-Lloyd AG. Concurrently, Moody's has affirmed the ratings assigned to the company, including its B2 CFR, B2-PD PDR and Caa1 senior unsecured rating. The change in…

Bourbon's Revenues up in 2013

Net Income Group share up 174% to €115 million. Increased operating margin1 and capital gains generated €575.7 million EBITDA, up 41.7% compared to 2012. Return on average capital employed (ROACE: EBIT / average capital employed excluding installments) increased to 9.8% compared to 5.8% in 2012. The majority of the vessel sales were done at the end of the year. The cost of financial debt remained at the same level as 2012 (€73 million). Other financial costs consist mainly of foreign exchange losses, 65% of which are unrealized at year end. Operating margin increased almost 2 points versus 2012 as the benefits of the focus on operational excellence began to materialize.

Vanishing Volatility Signals Oil Market Shift

Source: Reuters / J. Kemp

The oil market has rarely been so quiet. Benchmark Brent has traded in a narrow range of $5 either side of $110 per barrel since the summer of 2012. Price volatility has fallen to some of the lowest levels since crude futures markets were established in the early 1980s. Oil prices have rarely been so stable for so long since the 1973 oil shock ended the long period of calm in the 1950s and 1960s and ushered in the era of OPEC dominance. Measured volatility in front-month Brent futures prices has been below average continuously for almost two years.

Keppel Q1 Profits Dip Slightly

Maersk Intrepid was delivered by Keppel in Q1 2014 (Photo courtesy Maersk)

The Keppel Corporation released its limited unaudited results for the first quarter ending March31, 2014, reporting a 5% decrease in net profits to S$339 million compared to Q1 2013's S$357 million, though the company attributed the decline to one-off gains from the reversal of provision from the sale of a power barge and write-back of tax provision made by Keppel Land in Q1 2013. Earnings per share also fell, now 18.7 cents, down 6% from 1Q 2013's 19.8 cents, while economic value added decreased from S$217 million to S$151 million.

Container Equipment Market Surges Ahead: Drewry

Graph: Drewry Shipping Consultants Limited

The move towards container leasing and away from carrier ownership continues unabated and the leased fleet now has a clear majority over that owned by transport operators, according to the latest edition of the Container Census & Leasing and Equipment Insight published by global shipping consultancy Drewry. Leasing companies accounted for 55% of container purchases in 2017, which continues the trend seen for most of this decade. With the fleet of containers owned by transport operators growing by a mere 2.4%, the leased fleet added 6.7% and the share owned by lessors is now nearing 52%.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover May 2018 - Marine Propulsion Edition

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