4 September 2017: Hurricane Harvey impact assessment on tanker shipping
The tanker market will register trade flow changes as a result of TS (Tropical Storm) Harvey striking the prime energy hub in the US. As an immediate consequence, we foresee increased gasoline imports to the USAC from Europe due to a gasoline shortage in the domestic market, leading to firm MR rates on the TC2 route. Refined product exports from the USG will halt and trade partners of the world’s largest net-exporter will need to find alternative suppliers in the short-term.
The recent surge in the Panamax rates looks sustainable in the medium term as its demand is propelled by improved coal trade on the Australia-China route and the increasing soybean and corn trades from the Americas (US and Brazil) to Asia. Additionally, as per the sample fixture analysis, the average parcel size for commodities, other than iron ore, has also increased over the years, creating a preference for Panamaxes over Supramaxes in many cases, especially on long-haul.