China’s Economic Slowdown: How Bad Is It?








By John Cassidy

 Tuesday was another nervy day on Wall Street: the Dow closed down almost four hundred and seventy points, or about three per cent. The immediate issue, once again, was China, which by some measures is now the world’s second-largest economy. In Beijing, the government released a set of figures indicating that output from the country’s enormous manufacturing sector is declining. Another new statistic showed that the Chinese services sector, which has been growing pretty strongly, is now exhibiting some weakness, too.

At least two interpretations of the data are possible. The optimistic reading is that several one-off factors, including the temporary shuttering of factories in northern China to relieve pollution in Beijing, depressed the manufacturing

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Iran’s Giant Super-Tanker Fleet Eyes Western Waters


Iranian shipping company NITC says its in talks with U.K. marine insurers


Iran is hoping to sail its expanded fleet of super tankers, including 20 China-built vessels like the very large crude carrier pictured here, back into western waters if sanctions are lifted after a nuclear deal with global powers. Photo: Associated Press


Benoît Faucon

Updated July 2, 2015 11:04 a.m. ET

TEHRAN—Iran’s biggest oil shipping company has amassed theworld’s largest fleet of super tankers and is in talks to sail back into western waters should the Islamic Republic strike a nuclear deal, according to senior officials.

NITC, the privatized Iranian shipping company, says it has 42 very large crude carriers, known as VLCCs, after buying 20 such China-built vessels in the

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Carnival will stuff more than 7,000 people into its new cruise ships





Carnival Spirit cruise ship Ruth Duncan
by Justin Bachman

The largest cruise line plans to push the limits of cruise ship capacity. 

Carnival will introduce the world's largest cruise ship by passenger count -- although not by size - -with four new vessels capable of accommodating 6,600 passengers alongside hundreds of crew members. The large-capacity cruise ships will set sail between 2019 and 2022.

As part of the news, Carnival sought to stress that the experience won't make the new vessels any more crowded than other options in its fleet. "A major part of the innovative design involves making much more efficient use of the ship's spaces, creating an enhanced onboard experience for guests," the company said Monday in a news release. That means

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Dry bulk rate recovery positive for asset values




Kari Reinikainen

26 June 2015


Recent recovery in dry bulk freight rates may not be sustainable, but it is good for asset values, say Kurt Waldeland and Erik Nikolai Stavseth, shipping analysts at Arctic in Oslo.

The Capesize market has 'roared' back to life with spot rates quoted at USD9,500/day - up 120% since the start of June, they said in a daily market report emailed to IHS Maritime. "While we do not see the rate level as particularly attractive, the fact that shipowners are now covering OPEX and a little of the amortisation should be a boost for asset values," they said.

"Adding to the mix reported period fixtures in the range of USD14-15,000/day ('SBI Montecino' was on subs at USD14,900/day

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Blowtorches Fail to Ignite Worst Ever Commodity Shipping Market



by Bill Lehane Bloomberg


May 15, 2015 — 1:01 AM CEST


Carnival's LNG-Powered Ships to Hold 6,600 People: CEO

How bad is the market for shipping commodities across the world’s oceans? Consider that more than 100 vessels will probably be scrapped this year -- a record -- and daily earnings for the industry will still tumble.

Having predicted as recently as February that shipping rates this year would jump, forecasters are turning increasingly bearish as China’s coal imports plunge and its iron ore buying expands at the slowest pace on record. The Asian country’s economy, which is the second-largest after the U.S., will expand the least in a generation in 2015, estimates compiled by Bloomberg show.

Against that backdrop, owners will demolish

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