Global trade and the industries that underpin it have been slumping all year, and an early reading of South Korea’s monthly exports has served as a barometer of the slowdown.
Data released on the last day of August showed Korean factory output fell in July, reaching its longest stretch of decline in decades.
The container shipping industry is coming off a period of record profits in 2021 and 2022 tied to pandemic-driven demand for goods.
Many of the biggest companies are spending their windfalls on new, bigger vessels powered by cleaner-burning fuels to meet stricter industry emissions standards.
According to figures released Wednesday by veteran shipping analyst John McCown, net income for the industry totalled $8.9 billion in the second quarter, an 86% drop from the all-time quarterly record a year earlier of $63.1 billion.
But he still expects profit for the full year to be “well above” pre-pandemic performance. – Bloomberg