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Struggling shipowners rely on savings for modest profits

Extensive savings, increased expense control, and lower fuel costs helped the major container carriers get safely through the 1st half of the year. But they're all under sustained pressure, writes Alphaliner.

Photo: SØLBECK CHRIST

A firm grip on expenses is key if container carriers want to secure and reclaim their profits, as they remain under heavy pressure.

A study of 17 carriers' most recent financial reports for the 2nd quarter, performed by Alphaliner, shows that the average operating profit increased from the 1st to the 2nd quarter from negative 3.5 percent to negative 1 percent, in spite of a 5.1 percent decline in average freight rates in the second quarter, a decline that was partially compensated by decreasing fuel costs, which dropped 4.8 percent.

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