For the nine months ending September 30, the company’s net loss reached USD 84.8 million, against last year’s equivalent of USD 53.6 million.
“As we had expected, the first half of this year saw the bottom of the tanker market. Our predictions that freight rates for our vessels would rise during the second half of 2018 proved correct,” the company said.
“At this time spot contract indexes for two out of five Suezmax routes for our one million barrel tankers are above USD 50,000 per day, compared with the first 9 months of 2018, when the freight indexes showed about USD 6,000 per day. This is a good illustration of the volatility in freight rates and the potential for earnings in the tanker industry when the tanker market turns. We believe there could be much more to come. “
The time charter equivalent for the company’s vessels during the third quarter of 2018 was USD 12,000 per day per ship, an improvement quarter on quarter as in Q2 the TCE stood at USD 10,500 per day per vessel. Going forward, NAT expects much higher rates.
Having sold eight oldies in the first half of the year to make room for three newbuild Suezmax deliveries, NAT has reduced the average of its fleet to 11 years.