Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Twelve Empty Supertankers Reveal Truths About Today’s Oil Market

  • Ships are sailing without cargo after producers cut exports
  • Booming U.S. shipments still need to go to Asian refineries
Bloomberg business news
Oil Rose to Highest Since Mid-November
Updated on

They are slowly plowing their way across thousands of miles of ocean toward America’s Gulf of Mexico coastline. As they do, twelve empty supertankers are also revealing a few truths about today’s global oil market.

In normal times, the vessels would be filled with heavy, high sulfur Middle East oil for delivery to refineries in places like Houston or New Orleans. Not now though. They are sailing cargo-less, a practice that vessel owners normally try to avoid because ships earn money by making deliveries.