Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Maersk and others up on U.S. import surge, higher rates
Container carriers such as Maersk Line and others are benefiting from the uptick in rates for U.S. imports, since import container volume is at the highest level since before the downturn in the economy, according to Bloomberg.
The cost of shipping per-FEU from China to the U.S. West Coast surged 48 percent to $2,510 in 2012, according to shipbroker giant Clarkson Plc. Shipping companies will ask $800 more per-FEU for yearly contracts that begin in May, based on info from the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, a consortium of 15 shipping firms.
"The imports are consistent with the macroeconomic picture in the U.S., and things just turned significantly better," said Nigel Prentis, the head of research at London shipbroker HSBC Shipping. "As far as that translates into freight rates for box ships, that will depend on the supply side. There are an awful lot of ships."
Maersk stock is expected to increase 19 percent over the next year, according to Bloomberg analysts. Maersk owns the most ships carrying Asian goods to the U.S.
Other good news on the nation's improving economy is on the horizon. According to government figures, in September builders started constructing the first new houses in four years and people are buying cars at the briskest rate since 2008.
Maersk Line will post a 44 percent gain in net income to $3.8 billion for 2012, project Bloomberg analysts.
For more of the Bloomberg story: bloomberg.com
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