Container downturn adds fire to German shipping crisis

The downturn in the global container sector hurts German banks and retailers which have invested heavily in the industry through KG companies. Up to one fifth of the ships owned by German investors are insolvent, analyst firm tells the Wall Street Journal.

Photo: HSH Nordbank

German investors, in the form of banks and retailers, own up to 29 percent of the world's container fleet through the country's so-called KG companies. These investors are now facing big losses following the global downturn in the container sector.

Close to one fifth of the 2,200 German-owned container vessels are insolvent, analyst firm Deutsche Fund Research (DF) tells the Wall Street Journal, adding that the ailing container carriers will find it tough to get money from German investors.

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