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Q3 FY08-09 net profits down for GE Shipping

Q3 FY08-09 net profits down for GE Shipping

Mumbai: Indian shipowner Great Eastern Shipping has announced a 17.9% decrease to net profits for Q3 FY 2008-09 to Rs.2.4bn, in spite of a 12% quarter-on-quarter increase to total income during the period. However, the company has stated that its operating profits remained resilient and stayed "marginally positive".

GE Shipping's freight and charter hire income was higher by 16% for the period, despite the fact that operating revenue days for the quarter were down by 12.8%.  The earnings of the crude carrier fleet contributed to this in particular, with showing a 60% increase, while product tanker earnings were up 19%. However dry bulk earnings showed a substantial decrease, dropping by 32% for the quarter as compared to the same time in FY07-08.

"The tanker market has surprised most observers by continuing its strong streak. This was largely aided by the fact that there was a large contango in the oil prices, which caused a substantial demand for storage by some large oil trading companies," GE Shipping said in a statement. The company expects the tanker market to be volatile in the coming months, with OPEC cuts, winter delays and oil prices expected to effect demand and reduce rate predictability.

With regard to the bulk market, the company stated, "The uncertainty in the dry bulk trade continues as the global financial markets are still extremely unsettled, and every new economic forecast is bleaker than the last one. With economies going through a rough patch, we have seen a substantial reduction in steel production all over the world. This is likely to reduce demand for coal and iron ore imports on the one hand and also reduce the volume of steel export trade resulting in a double hit for dry bulk trade."  [30/01/09]