The dry bulk fleet is now worth more than the combined value of the tanker fleet, leapfrogging containerships as well, according to the vessel valuation expert VesselsValue.
The surge in the value of the dry bulk assets comes on the back of soft returns that plagued the market over the past couple of years which encouraged scrapping and drove ton-mile demand increase.
The dry bulk market hit rock bottom three years ago, with rates spiraling down amid tonnage overcapacity. However, as the market reaps the gains of a restored balance between supply and demand, hire rates have been on the climb enticing owners to invest in more tonnage.
Separately, the tanker market is currently hit from both sides, as supply and demand continue to exert pressure on earnings. Namely, demand for tanker transportation is affected by inventory drawdowns, whereas the supply side is hit by deliveries of newbuildings exceeding retirements of older ships.
Based on VesselsValue’s figures, the value of the bulker fleet as of March 2018 is just below USD 200 billion standing at USD 195.3 billion, with tankers following suit close behind in value totaling in USD 192.5 billion.
The containership fleet value, on the other hand, stands at USD 115.3 billion.
The LNG fleet value stands at USD 73.2 billion, LPG fleet value at USD 30 billion while small dry vessels are worth a total of USD 25.8 billion.
The overall value of the global shipping fleet totals in USD 633 billion.
As shown in the graphic above, the value of the tanker fleet has slipped by almost USD 50 billion dollars from 2015 to the present, while bulkers have appreciated by a net USD 56 billion dollars.
“Tankers appear to be in the middle of a down cycle, which has depressed the valuation of the tonnage on the water and the outstanding orderbook to second place. Although the top three vessel segments have shuffled places, gas carriers and small dry ships held onto more historic trends. Overall the value of total freight carrying assets fell by about USD 43 billion from the end of 2015,” VesselsValue said.