Friday, November 13, 2015

Maersk Line - decline in 3rd quarter profit

Maersk Line posted disappointed profit for the 3rd quarter of 2015.   I fear we will not be seeing and upturn in the industry until there is more consolidation in the industry.

From Maersk Line

“The Maersk Group delivered an underlying profit of USD 662m in the third quarter. The decline of nearly 50 percent compared to last year was primarily due to container freight rates deteriorating to a historically low level, especially in the later part of Q3, and profits in Maersk Oil being impacted by the lower oil price. The expected underlying result of around USD 3.4bn for 2015 reflects good performance in very challenging oil and container shipping markets, where the continuous actions taken in all our business units to reduce the cost base will enable us to maintain our ability to pursue the opportunities arising in our industries,” says Group CEO Nils S. Andersen.

Monday, November 9, 2015

American President Line (APL) parent company confirms takeover talks

NOL, the parent company of APL has confirmed they are in take over talks with
Maersk and CMA CGM.  I presume they are in separate talks with each company,
however the combination of these 3 companies would certainly be interesting.

From World Maritime News

Singapore-based container shipping company Neptune Orient Lines Limited (NOL) is in preliminary discussions with French CMA CGM SA and Danish A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S with respect to a potential acquisition of NOL, the company said, thus confirming recent media reports.
“NOL has a duty to assess all options to maximise shareholder value and improve its competitiveness. From time to time, NOL enters into discussions on possible combinations involving NOL, while remaining focused on returning its core liner business to sustainable growth and profitability,” NOL added.
However, the company stressed that there is no assurance that any such discussions will result in any definitive agreement or transaction, or that any offer for NOL will be made.
“NOL will make an appropriate announcement in the event that there are any material developments. Shareholders of NOL and investors are therefore advised to exercise caution when dealing in shares in and other securities of NOL,” the company concluded.
The confirmation comes on the back of an announcement dating back to July, in which NOL said that the investment company Temasek Holdings Pte. Ltd, NOL’s majority stake owner, was in talks with an undisclosed buyer to sell its stake in NOL, but that there was still no definitive deal yet.
Previously, NOL had been linked to a potential merger with German carrier Hapag-Loyd and subsequently Hong Kong’s Orient Overseas (International) Ltd, nevertheless none of them were realized.Tamasek holds 65% stake in the company whereas the remaining 35% is traded on the Singapore Stock Exchange. NOL, which operates through the APL brand, has 92 vessels in its fleet.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Swift International Logistics- license revoked by the FMC

The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission has received several complaints from customers of
Swift, stating their cargo has not been delivered, and they cannot get information from Swift.

On Nov. 3, 2015 the FMC announced they have revoked the license of Swift, and some of the apparently abandoned cargo is in peril of being auctioned.  Following is the news release from the FMC.

November 3, 2015

On November 2, 2015, the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) revoked Swift International Logistics Inc.’s (Swift) ocean transportation intermediary (OTI) license. Swift is no longer authorized to provide OTI services. Consumers and businesses should not tender cargo to Swift or its agents for the international shipment of goods.
The Commission has information that four shipments that were handled by Swift will be auctioned by transportation providers to whom payments for service have not been made.
The consignees are:
  1. Naveed Ali 
    • place of delivery: Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates 
    • estimated date of arrival: 7 October, 2015
  2. Francoise Marie
    • place of delivery: Bassens, France
    • estimated date of arrival: 25 August, 2015
  3. Allan Fraser Brown
    • place of delivery: Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
    • estimated date of arrival: 18 September, 2015
  4. Pasquale Vassilli
    • place of delivery: Lisbon, Portugal
    • estimated date of arrival, 27 August, 2015
The above-named consignees or their agents should contact the Commission’s Office of Consumer Affairs and Dispute Resolution Services at 202-523-5807 or as soon as possible.
click here for link to FMC

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Another Carjacking Ring in New Jersey

Last year a carjacking ring was broken up.   I wrote about it in this blog posting.

Your Stolen Car is In West Africa

Now, another carjacking ring operating mainly in New Jersey was broken up.  They were going after specific high end cars.   If you drive a black Mercedes S550, take extra precautions.

From The Waterfront Commission

Law enforcement partners in “Operation 17 Corridor” recovered 90 cars worth over $4 million
October 28, 2015
           TOTOWA, N.J. – Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman announced that 21 men have been charged in the takedown of a major international carjacking and stolen car trafficking ring that stole luxury cars from suburbs along the Route 17 corridor in New Jersey and neighboring New York, as well as other suburban communities in northern and central New Jersey, shipping the cars to West Africa where they command premium prices. Eighteen men were arrested yesterday on charges including first-degree racketeering, carjacking and money laundering as a multi-agency team fanned out to execute arrest warrants. Three men are being sought as fugitives on arrest warrants.

click here complete report

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Hapag-Llloyd IPO

Hapag-Lloyd has been trying to do an IPO for a few years.  The world economy is not making this easy, and once again they have postponed it for a few days, because their competitor Maersk, downgraded their forecast.

Hapag-Lloyd says their forecast is unchanged.  They are not as involved in the Asian trade as Maersk, and Maersk also has much more exposure in the oil exploration and transportation than Hapag-Lloyd, so I think
Hapag-Lloyd is probably valid to hold to their forecast.

Here's what Reuters reported
German container shipping group Hapag-Lloyd [HPLG.UL] is postponing its stock market debut by a week after investors turned its back on the company following peer Maersk's (MAERSKb.CO) profit warning, two sources told Reuters.
If demand for the shares remains weak Hapag may lower the offer price, the people familiar with the deal said on Tuesday, adding that cancelling the IPO also remained an option.
Hapag-Lloyd said it was extending the offer period for its initial public offering (IPO) by a week to Nov. 3, with trading now likely to start on Nov. 6.
"The order book had been more than one time subscribed. Now the main goal is to get investors to come back who have shied away due to Maersk," one of the people said.
Hapag-Lloyd reiterated that its earnings outlook remained unchanged, despite peer Maersk's (MAERSKb.CO) slashing its 2015 profit targets last week.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Don't do business with Medrano Express, also known as Diamond Shipping

I don't know the history behind this company, but many people got taken for a ride.

A news release from the N.C. Attorney General's Office said Medrano Express, Diamond Shipping, Inc. and Jorge Medrano are permanently banned from the shipping business in North Carolina after Judge Donald Stephens signed a default judgement on Monday. 

Medrano Express, which is based in Hempstead, N.Y. and operates under the name Diamond Shipping, specializes in shipping items to Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Mexico. The company operates in 20 states and had offices in Raleigh and Charlotte. 

Price of WTI Oil for 2016

It's been some time since I have posted, and several years since I dared to make a prediction regarding the price of oil.

My last forecast was for 2012, and I thought oil we be around $100.00 a barrel.  That prediction was a little high, but not by much.

Now that oil has dropped down to half of that,  I will go out on a limb and say that for 2016, the WTI Oil price will be around $60.00 a barrel.

It's been in the $50.00 range for most of 2015, and it really should hang around that or even lower, as no one seems to be halting production.    But, I just feel it in my bones that it's going to inch up a bit.

Now, as for predictions for the shipping industry for 2016,  I will have to put on my "thinking cap" for a bit.