Dry bulk shipper Pacific Basin net plunges to US$8.2m

Business | 31 Jul 2019 5:58 pm

Pacific Basin Shipping (2343) said  net profit for the first half slumped by 73.38 percent year-on-year to US$8.2 million (HK$63.96 million), as a result of markedly weaker dry bulk freight market conditions.

The dry bulk shipping services provider booked an underlying loss of US$600,000 in the first half, compared with a profit of US$28 million.

Revenue fell by 3.58 percent to US$767.1 million.

The basic earnings per share were HK1.4 cents.

The company expects to see seasonally stronger freight market conditions in the second half, although with continued volatility influenced by further uncertainty about the US-China trade war, slower economic growth than in recent years and the impact of African swine fever on soybean imports to China.

Key catalysts for improvement on the demand side are expected to include the onset of the Black Sea grain export season and a return to normal levels of grain traffic out of the Mississippi River and iron ore exports from Brazil.

Market rates have been firming, especially in the Atlantic, the company said.

It still sees upside in secondhand vessel values and will continue to look cautiously at acquiring good quality ships, the Chief Executive Mats Berglund said.

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