Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Major Ship Broker Interim Results Indicates State of the Freight Sector

Integrated Shipping Services Provider Releases Half Year Figures
Shipping News Feature

WORLDWIDE- UK - Clarkson plc, whose status has historically proved an accurate indicator of certain sectors of the industry, has produced unaudited interim first half year figures this week. Clarkson are the leading brokers acting between ship owners and charterers in the various ocean sectors including oil tankers, bulk dry freight and container sectors.

Clarkson also cover the globe geographically having offices on five continents and, having traded for well over a century and a half, are watched carefully by freight market analysts. For the six month period ending on the 30th June 2011 revenues were adversely affected by the dollar exchange rate and the cost of withdrawal from non-core, loss-making logistics activities dropping to £88.6 million, around -12% against 2010 figures.

Profit before taxation was also down making £13.5 million compared with £14.7 million last year before an adjustment of £2.0m for a one-off release. Basic earnings per share were 52.6p, a drop of 22% on 2010’s 66.7p whereas an interim dividend is 1p higher than last years 17p. Net funds after deduction of accrued bonus entitlements £71.8m, equating to £3.80 per share and Clarkson’s say the group is debt free following repayment of all borrowings.

The figures are unsurprising considering the state of flux the industry has passed through, a look at the Baltic Dry Index for the period sees a more or less steady drop in rates from 4074 at the start of June 2010 to a dismal 1480 as May ended in 2011. Andi Case, Clarkson’s Chief Executive commented:

“As has been well documented in recent weeks, the rate of global macroeconomic recovery remains difficult to predict. However, our robust performance for the first six months of 2011 has further underpinned our belief that we have the right strategy in place across our business and will continue to benefit from the breadth and global reach of our operations as we look forward into the second half of the year. I would like to thank all our colleagues for their hard work and commitment during the period.”

Photo: Andi Case Chief Executive Officer Clarkson plc