Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Maersk Parent Sees $1 Billion In Losses By Year's End

Danish shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk, parent of shipping line Maersk, pointed to a 31.7 percent drop in container shipping revenues and falling cargo rates for a $706 million loss in the first nine months of the year and said it projects losing more than $1 billion by year's end.

CEO Nils Smedegaard told analysts that the main problem in the industry remains rates, which while edging up slightly in recent months, are still well below rates at the start of the year. He also said that rates are not recovering as quickly as bunker fuel prices are increasing and when fuel prices are factored out, rates still remain below levels at the start of the year.

Despite seeing volumes and rates increase in the third quarter, A.P. Moller-Maersk reported a $163 million loss in its container shipping operations during the first nine months of the year, with container volumes off 5.6 percent compared to the first nine months of last year.

Revenue from container shipping operations fell to $15 billion for the first nine months of the year and total A.P. Moller-Maersk revenues were off 25 percent from the year-ago period to $35.5 billion.