This is what I said in previous years.
In 2009 I said we would be in a recession until 2011.
I think that was probably pretty accurate.
We are definitely changing into a world economy.
Still valid, and becoming more evident.
China is very quickly emerging as the dominant economy in the world.
China has already surpassed Greece in purchases of bulk carriers, and now China will build more ships, knocking out Korea who until now was the largest shipbuilder.
I think in the next decade, China will become more important than the U.S., from an economic standpoint. India, Indonesia, and Africa will also become more important.
Africa will expand due to influence from China and India, but with it will probably come exploitation, displacement of peoples, and turmoil.
As for ocean transport, carriers will need to restrain from adding too much capacity. If they forget what happened the last few years, they will throw themselves back into an overcapacity situation, and see rates plummet again.
Oil prices. Last year the best guess was somewhere between 50 and 100 dollars a barrel. Pretty close.
In 2011 I think we will see some wide swings in the price of oil. As soon as there is money to be made, the speculators are back in action.
OPEC is not so stupid as to let the oil prices get so high, that everyone converts to alternative energy sources.
Once again, China will be a dominate factor. They are pushing towards alternative energies, but their demand will grow so fast, I am not sure how much it will offset the increased demand for fossil fuels.
Probably at the best, it will be a wash.
So, that's my best guess for 2011. It won't be a great year, but it won't be horrible.
And if you are still out of work, I suggest you take any job you can find.