Following are comments from Ole-Rikard Hammer, head of research at RS Platou Economic Research, a unit of the company that also owns Norway’s largest shipbroker.
He commented in a report today. China will grow at a 7.7 percent pace this year, down from from 7.8 percent in 2012, according to the average of 57 economist estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Its rate of expansion will decline every year through 2015, according to the forecasts.
“The Chinese economy has continued to slow and increased volatility in the country’s financial markets may mean that a ‘hard landing’ could be in store. If so, it would in all likelihood be a worse hit to the commodity shipping markets than the Euro crisis.
‘‘Since 2008, China has been responsible for over 50 percent of total demand growth for oil, virtually all trade growth for crude tankers, and close to 90 percent of demand growth for dry-bulkers.’’
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