Oil export from U.S. sent thousands of workers to the plains of Texas and North Dakota. It would begin exporting oil for the first time since the 1973 oil embargo.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries had abandoned output limits to get market share. So, ships that carry as much as 2 million barrels a trip are in demand to haul crude from the Middle East to Asia and North America. As oil prices fell about 35 percent in 2015, average earnings for these carriers jumped to $67,366 a day. In addition, on-land storage space dwindles which could mean more barrels eventually will be stored on ships, further increasing profit, said Tsakos.
Even if freight rates slip in 2016, the ships still will earn $46,400 a day, the second best year since 2009, according to the median of six analysts surveyed by Bloomberg and historical data from Clarkson. The average carrier is about 332 meters long, or almost 1,089 feet, data from IHS show. The carriers’ earnings will be more than double this year, according to analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The extra rates would work out at more than $5 billion in additional revenues if applied across the entire fleet.
“A scenario in which crude oil prices are suppressed across 2016 could lead to a boom in tanker earnings of comparable magnitude to 2007-08,” said Tim Smith, senior analyst at Maritime Strategies International, in a report.