Oil shipping market appears to rebound in the new year

The new year is looking promising for oil tankers.

The new year is looking promising for oil tankers.

Shipping markets have recently experienced an upturn, causing oil tanker companies to seek to raise capital through United States listings.

Although crude oil prices have fallen by 50 percent since June of last year, a drop in bunker fuel prices and an increasing demand for oil has helped the shipping industry rebound in recent months. According to Reuters, supertankers' average earnings reached over $83,000 per day this week, approaching the $120,000 peak the industry experienced in 2008 before trade fell dramatically.

Among the companies planning for share issues are Tankships Investment Holdings Inc. and Euronav. Tankships recently reported that it is aiming for $100 million in a Nasdaq listing. Euronav announced earlier this week that it would list on the New York Stock Exchange in a public offering worth about $175 million.

"The sharp increase in tanker rates and voyage activity is likely to continue as OPEC members maintain their high production levels," said Tankships in its annual prospectus. "We believe we are well positioned to benefit from a recovery in the crude oil tanker market. However, we cannot assure you that the tanker market will strengthen as we anticipate and charter rates may decline."

Conditions look promising for tanker companies, but industry experts are waiting to see how the year proceeds before commenting definitively on any shipping trends that may be emerging. 

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