Confidence in the shipping industry has marginally decreased in the last three months as the industry has experienced a surplus in supply over demand.
According to the latest Moore Stephens shipping confidence survey report, the average confidence level in August was 6.1 on a scale of one (low) to ten (high). This is down from the 6.3 recorded in May, but higher than the 5.9 recorded in August last year.
Shipping partner Richard Greiner said: "The slight decrease in confidence recorded over the three-month period covered by the survey coincides with a deterioration in the political situation in areas of the Middle East and Ukraine.
"Shipping operates on a global stage and must inevitably be affected by international events."
Several respondents listed in the survey felt that the number of ships in the offing against the cargo available is high. As overtonnaging in the tanker and bulk carrier markets will have an adverse effect on freight rates, building new ships, especially tankers and bulkers, needs to be stopped.
A respondent said: "The market is in danger of collapse as a result of newbuilding speculation based on misleading projections.
"The market will return to health once non-shipowning operators and cash-strapped owners exit the industry."
Demand trends, competition and finance costs have been cited as the top three influencing factors on performance for the next 12 months.
One respondent stated: "We had been anticipating a better year in 2014, but that has not materialised to date, so we now look to 2015, when we anticipate a better year, with an improvement between supply and demand in terms of tonnage."
Image: A cargo ship at Jawaharlal Nehru Trust Port in Mumbai, India. Photo: courtesy of Jaxer at en.wikipedia.