Saudi Arabia to Japan Tanker Rates Extend Slump as Demand Slows

Rates for tankers to ship Saudi Arabian oil to Japan, an industry benchmark route, slid an eighth day as demand for the vessels slowed.

Costs for very large crude carriers shipping 2 million barrel cargoes fell 2.8 percent to 37.93 Worldscale points, according to the Baltic Exchange in London today. The rate equates to earnings of $9,946 a day, according to the bourse.

The “weak trend” is because oil companies already booked most of the ships they need for loading during the first 10 days of July, meaning the pace of bookings has now slowed, Fearnley Consultants A/S, an Oslo-based shipping researcher, said in an e-mailed report today. There isn’t “much resistance” from owners to prevent further declines, it said.

The VLCC market has about 20 percent surplus capacity, the biggest glut since about 1985, Fearnley estimated June 13. Supply and demand for the carriers will both expand by about 5 percent this year, according to Clarkson Plc, the world’s largest shipbroker.

The largest one-day move for crude tankers globally was for vessels taking 100,000 metric-ton cargoes of Russian oil to Europe. Costs for those fell 8.6 percent to 63.75 Worldscale points, according to the exchange. Tankers hauling refined petroleum to the U.S. Atlantic Coast from the Caribbean jumped 4.1 percent to 139.5 Worldscale points, the largest one-day move among oil-product tankers.