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Bocimar losses mount to $44.6m in 2014 as dry bulk takes its toll

Bocimar losses mount to $44.6m in 2014 as dry bulk takes its toll
Dry bulk operator Bocimar lost $44.6m in 2014, its losses growing as the year progressed and freight markets collapsed.

In a year that just got worse as it went on the Belgian company lost $4.3m in the first quarter, $5.8m in the second, $15.1m in the third quarter and $20.4m in the fourth quarter.

Bocimar's loss includes a $5.3m capital loss on the sale of 2011-built capesize vessel Mineral Manila, and reverses a $3.4m profit in 2013.

"Contrary to all expectations, and despite a slight upturn in the third quarter, dry bulk rates have dropped to historically the lowest levels since 1986," the company stated in its earnings release. Bocimar attributed the bad market condition to growth slowdowns in China and Southeast Asia, and speculative buying of new tonnage affecting the supply and demand balance.

The company did highlight one positive sign from the current situation, "Recently this dramatic freight market has already led to a strong increase in scrapping of older tonnage, the cancellation or delaying of the existing order book and a curtailing of new orders."

Parent company Compagnie Maritime Belge (CMB) reported a $27.7m loss for the year, as its aviation and other activities negated some of the shipping loss with a $16.8m profit. CMB's 2013 profit was $49.7m.