The outlook is poor for dry bulk, as the negative demand shock and overcapacity come together to send rates to multi-year lows, even a return to work in China is not enough to support the market.
The Covid-19 crisis has – and will continue to – hit the container shipping market hard, and the current economic situation provides no hope for a short-term recovery.
Geopolitical tensions have now eased, leaving freight rates to feel the full effects of the weak underlying market and falling demand. Tanker shipping looks set to be under pressure for the rest of the year.
No V-shaped recovery in sight after the large-scale shutdown of economic activity and the virus posing a risk to globalisation.
Throughout April, container shipping spot freight rates on the back-haul trade from North Europe to China were higher than those on the front-haul trade from China to North Europe.
The sulphur regulation from the International Maritime Organization (IMO) that came into force on 1 January 2020 took the centre stage in the shipping industry at outset of the new decade. Four months on, the spotlights have turned to the coronavirus and the OPEC+ oil price war.
Despite lower volumes being fixed in the spot market, it is key to tracking developments in the container shipping market, as it quickly responds to the changing situation and adjustments to demand and supply.