- A new advantage: Baltic Escrow special introductory rates
Trust and values underpin everything that the Baltic Exchange does. Dmitry notes that the 275-year old Baltic holds a unique position of independence and trust in the shipping industry. The Baltic’s escrow service looks to build on this reputation with an offering that provides a strong alternative to other service providers such as law firms and banks.
To provide Members with an opportunity to trial the service, the Baltic Exchange will be offering the first three transactions free of charge, with subsequent transactions at a discount of 20% on the standard fee until June 2020. Even after this period, Members will continue to benefit from favourable fees.
Going the extra mile
The Baltic Exchange is continually looking to add value for its Members. Dmitry shares that the service is underpinned by a high standard of compliance and controls. The Baltic Exchange follows a robust due diligence process in compliance with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) requirements. This is reinforced by the strict internal control of fund movements from the dedicated escrow account held with AA-rated Singapore bank OCBC. The Baltic Exchange is backed by its listed parent company, Singapore Exchange (SGX), which provides a further level of assurance to users.
“The Baltic is coming in as an independent, reputable and trustworthy institution that is known in the market. Due to its independence, there will be no conflict of interest, this, in addition to its competitive pricing, makes it a strong option for anyone in the industry looking to use an escrow service.”
Dmitry highlights that the Baltic Exchange’s independent and neutral position helps to differentiate it from other escrow providers in the market. Due to its independence, users of the Baltic’s escrow service can be sure that conflicts of interest will not arise and each transaction will be handled with the highest level of confidentiality, professionalism and security.
The Baltic Escrow process
The Baltic Exchange receives a request to act as the independent escrow agent for a ship sale and purchase transaction. The Baltic Escrow agreement and terms are sent to the buyer and seller for review while the necessary compliance checks are undertaken. Upon completion of compliance checks, the buyer and seller sign the escrow agreement. The deposit and related funds are transferred by the buyer to the Baltic Exchange escrow account and held securely while the deal formalities are completed. Once the deal is ready to be concluded and all contract terms are met, the buyer and seller instruct the Baltic Exchange to release the funds to the seller. At this point, the transaction is executed swiftly and professionally and with the highest attention to detail.
From Singapore to the world
Dmitry is keen to assure Members that while the servicing is handled out of Singapore, it is available to users globally. The choice to set-up the service in Singapore he says was a business one, with Singapore being both a major shipping hub and the centre for a large number of ship closings. This, in addition to its strong regulatory framework and international banking expertise, made the location a sensible choice.
Dmitry closes our conversation by discussing the future. While in the short term he expects the primary use of the Baltic escrow service to be for ship sale and purchase, Baltic is looking into expanding the service offering to other asset purchases, disputes and situations where an independent party is required to hold funds pending completion of a transaction. Baltic is also offering its escrow services to both existing Members and other users.
If you would like to take advantage of the Baltic Escrow Service’s introductory offer, or find out more about how the Baltic Escrow Service can support your business or learn more about becoming a Baltic Member, contact:
Dmitry Pismenny for the Baltic Exchange Escrow service on +65 9435 6650 / +65 3163 4913 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Crispin Eccleston for membership details on +44 (0)20 7369 1654 / email@example.com
- Baltic Exchange and TradeWinds International Shipbroking Forum
On 11 September the Baltic Exchange, in partnership with TradeWinds, will be presenting the International Shipbroking Forum, London, at the Doubletree By Hilton, Tower of London Hotel. The event, which takes place during London International Shipping Week, will incorporate three sessions. These sessions are as follows:
Panel One 2-3pm
Relevant, reliable and tradable: Indices for today’s shipping markets
Panel members include Emanuel (Manu) Ravano, CEO, Ifchor; John Banaszkiewicz, Managing Director, FIS, Chris Reilly, Managing Director, BRS Futures and Ben Gibson, Head of LNG Derivatives, Affinity Shipping. Mark Jackson, CEO, Baltic Exchange, will moderate the discussion.
Panel Two 3.10-4.10pm
Shipbroking and Digitalisation – Disruption, Diversification and Differentiation
Julian Bray, Editor-in-Chief, TradeWinds, is joined by Mark O’Neil, President, Columbia Shipmanagement Ltd; Ami Daniel, CEO, Windward; Martin Hjelle, Head of Technology, Western Bulk; Viral Shah, Head of Freight Trading, RWE Supply and Trading; Nico Borkmann, Director and Executive Board Member, Braemar ACM Shipbroking.
Panel Three 4.30-5.30pm
Regulation & Shipping – what’s come/coming over the horizon?
Stefan Albertijn, Chairman, Baltic Index Council will be joined by Duncan Dunn, Senior Director, SSY Futures Ltd; Brian Nixon, Managing Director, Lavinia Bulk Ltd and Jonathan Herbst, Global Head of Financial Services Regulation, Norton Rose Fullbright LLP.
Registration for the event commences from 1pm, with opening remarks taking place at 1.30pm. Short breaks will be held between sessions, with a networking drinks reception on the Savage Garden rooftop immediately following the forum.
For more information and for registration enquiries, click here.
- Baltic LNG Index update
The second of the Baltic Exchange’s LNG assessments goes live on 13 August following a successful trial and approval by the Baltic Exchange Index Council. BLNG3 (Sabine/Tokyo round voyage with routing via Panama) is now available to members and subscribers at www.balticexchange.com.
BLNG2 (Sabine/Isle of Grain round voyage) moves to Public Trial.
The Baltic LNG Index is published on Tuesdays and Fridays at 1100 (London).
For a free trial of Baltic Exchange data, visit www.balticexchange.com/join/free-trial.shtml
- Marine art exhibition at the Baltic
Mall Galleries will be holding an exhibition of pastel paintings by Matthew Draper at the Baltic Exchange between 4 September and 4 October. Matthew Draper is the 2019 winner of the Baltic Exchange Award at the Royal Society of Marine Artists’ Annual Exhibition. Paintings will be displayed in the Baltic Bar and around the building.
This exhibition draws together his winning painting alongside other works from recent series that approach the relationship between water and light. His atmospheric landscapes take us from the Scottish Islands of Skye and Raasay to the busy River Thames and down into the West Country to Falmouth Harbour, a site he has revisited over the course of 25 years.
Draper won the Baltic Exchange Award for the pastel painting Nocturne with A Polluted Light, a depiction of Falmouth Harbour at night, the dockyard lights blurred through the fog and cranes, the hull of a ship, floating buoys just discernible in the glow.
“I became interested in how to combine the two types of reflections; whether it be the lit-up dockland, and parts of the town or the remaining evening light, with the movement seen on the surface of the water,” said Matthew Draper.
The artist identifies himself principally as a draughtsman and uses soft pastel as a medium, crushing it in his hands and manipulating the material to build up a thick layered surface using the ball of his thumb or the heel of his hand, and even his forearms.
Known for his atmospheric and beautiful depictions of landscape he is interested in and influenced by the dramatic imagery of 18th and 19th century painting.
Draper is an Edinburgh-based artist who has exhibited widely throughout the UK and whose work can be found in numerous private, corporate and public collections including that of The Bank of Scotland, Huawei, Falmouth Art Gallery, Kelvin Grove Gallery and The City of Edinburgh.
All paintings exhibited are for sale through www.mallgalleries.org.uk/buy-art
- Passing of former Baltic Member, Martyn Hill
Members will learn with deep regret of the death of Martyn Hill on 16 August 2019.
Mr Hill was first elected a member of the Baltic Exchange in 1963. He represented Stevinson Hardy International Ltd until 1983, Furness-Houlder (Shipbroking) Ltd 1983-84, and from 1984 represented Century Chartering (UK) Ltd until he became a Baltic Retired Member in 2000.
Funeral details are awaited.
- Member update: 21 August
The following individuals have applied for membership of an existing member company:
Company Individual Clarksons Platou
Ms W Y Cheung Mr S I Edwards Mr T Fitch Mr J Martin Mr A T Walters Howe Robinson & Co Ltd Mr T Hurst Ocean Longevity Shipping and Management Co Ltd
Mr A Yeung Pasternak, Baum & Company Inc. Mr F Gomez Triton Navigation BV Mr M Shimizu Western Bulk Chartering AS Mr S Ehsani
The following individuals have applied for Retired Membership:
Mr C P Lawrence
Mr A R W Marsh
Any comments should be passed to Karen Karanicholas by 28 August 2019.
- TradeWinds Shipowners Forum Greater China 2019
The Baltic Exchange is supporting the annual TradeWinds Shipowners Forum Greater China 2019 in Shanghai.
The event takes place on 5 September and all Baltic members who would like to attend are entitled to a discounted rate.
To obtain this discounted rate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and state that you are working for a Baltic member company.
For more information, click here.
- Copper not gone to pot
Those with a vested interest in copper might be finding the present US–China trade war a particularly-bitter pill to swallow at the moment. According to Matthew Badiali — senior analyst at financial services business Banyan Hill Publishing — before the escalation of the conflict, copper was in a steady two-year bull market.
However, earlier this month, the price of the material hit its lowest in over two years, reportedly reflecting concerns from investors about the volatile trade dispute and muted economic growth. On 5 August, copper futures HGU19, -0.50% settled at $2.544 a pound — a figure which, under data from financial data and software organisation FactSet, was the lowest for a ‘most-active’ contract since June 2017. In June last year, copper prices had slipped under $3 a pound as US and Chinese threats to implement reciprocal import tariffs intensified, and since then, the metal has failed to trade above this level.
Not all bad
But regardless of tighter copper supplies, analysts believe that commodities traders could overcome economic fears, which would increase copper values. Brent Cook, economic geologist and co-editor of the newsletter Exploration Insights, which provides junior mining and exploration industry analysis, says that accurately reflecting a slowing world economy is the metal’s current price.
In fact, Goldman Sachs, the investment bank and financial services firm, is bullish on the metal. Speaking on the programme Bloomberg Daybreak: Americas in August, Jeffrey Currie, the firm’s global head of Commodities Research in the Global Investment Research division, saw an export recession taking place, with large exporters being hit across the globe. However, he was in a different mind about imports.
Copper follows the global economy, and when the global economy is slowing down, the copper price tends to fall as well
“Importers, on the other hand, are drawing down their inventories,” he said. “They’re destocking, which brings us to copper. So, as you begin to destock, a lot of these in-use types of goods — because you’re waiting for a trade war to be resolved — you’re going to have to go back and replenish these inventories, which should give you a pop.
“Fundamentally, we like copper. Our target is $7,000 a tonne. We’re trading 5,700, 5,800, right now because the fundamental picture [for] supply [is] supplies have tightened up significantly, but the demand picture, again, [is] middling: not great, not bad. In China, you still have the property market, you still have the infrastructure in grid markets — … exporter-driven weakness. The rest of the picture, I would say, doesn’t warrant this type of pullback.”
Speaking in August on IG TV, the broadcast channel of online trading and investments provider IG, John Meyer, partner and mining analyst at investment banking firm SP Angel, put the futures low down to a number of factors. A lot of it, he said, is driven by speculators deciding to “go short” instead of having positive bets on copper. However, the analyst “[suspects] there’s a bit of manipulation from the Chinese authorities because they like commodity prices to be lower”. Another element is currency: Mr Meyer says that the Chinese central bank has let the renminbi, China’s official currency, drop — or maybe even encouraged it to do so — and Chinese copper buyers will want to pay slightly less for it. As for the US dollar, it currently looks stronger in comparison to the renminbi, and when the dollar rises, the prices of metals tend to pull back a little. While the US economy is doing “proportionately better” in terms of growth, even American policymakers are concerned about it, hence a then-recent quarter-point rate-cut.
“So, [there are] lots of policy issues going on, lots of people concerned about the growth rate of the global economy, and therefore commodities [are] pulling back a bit,” Mr Meyer concluded.
“Copper follows the global economy, and when the global economy is slowing down, the copper price tends to fall as well,” he added.
An electric future
There’s a big plus point for copper going forward — and it’s all centred around electric vehicles (EVs). In May, the International Energy Agency said that electric mobility is expanding fast: last year, the world’s electric car fleet topped 5.1m, up 2m from 2017 and nearly doubling the amount of new electric car sales. According to Henry Salisbury, analyst for copper demand at research and consultancy group Wood Mackenzie, copper constitutes “a cornerstone of the EV revolution”. With EVs themselves, there are no viable alternatives to copper, he explains.
“At the heart of the EV, copper is used throughout because of its high electrical conductivity, durability and malleability,” the analyst said, adding that “even more is used in charging stations and in supporting electrical grid infrastructure”.
Stan Bharti, chief executive of private merchant bank Forbes & Manhattan, argued that with a rise in the global population and climate change, base metal demand will go up due to the environmentally-friendly nature of EVs. As for Mr Badiali, he thinks that the true driver of copper is set to be the pace of adoption of EVs and alternative energy and that “if the trend is real, then we are watching the birth of an epic bull market” for the metal. According to him, copper sentiment could become bullish due to demand fundamentals displaying robust support for elevated prices. Using reported figures for his estimates, Mr Badiali believes the planet will have to produce 5m metric tons of copper monthly by 2030 — around 2.5 times more than it is set to generate in 2019 — to meet projected EV sector demand.
Electric cars are estimated to contain between four and 10 times as much copper as conventional ones and mining projects currently in the pipeline will likely be insufficient to meet anticipated rising demand from 2025. Brokers and charterers should prepare for a surge in copper trade as and when demand for EV cars really accelerates.
The Baltic Exchange will hold its next Shipping Economics & Investment course on 13 and 14 January 2020 in London. More information can be found here.
- An evening with Paralympic sailor Hannah Stodel
Co-hosted with HFW at their London office, BESA is delighted to invite its members and the wider Baltic Exchange community to a special presentation on Wednesday 9 October given by British Paralympic World Champion, Hannah Stodel. Hannah will share the inspiring story of her success and discuss the next challenge she has set herself: to become the first disabled sailor ever to take on the Vendée Globe. Racing 24,000 miles around the world – nonstop and without any assistance – Hannah plans to set three major records along the way.
Registration for the event begins at 5.15pm, presentation at 5.45pm and networking over drinks and canapés at 6.30pm.
About our speaker
Three times World Champion and four times Paralympian, Hannah Stodel was born missing her lower right arm but she is a force unto herself and it has not stopped her from competing in able-bodied competition. Besides her three World Championship titles and scores of other results and awards, she’s been the global leader for reinstating disabled sailing into the Paralympic games and is an ambassador for Ditch the Label (anti-bullying) charity in London. With a fierce determination, Hannah is now undertaking the greatest challenge yet, her personal “Everest of the Seas” by competing in the Vendée Globe. We very much hope you can join us for what should be an interesting and inspiring event.
Please RSVP if you wish to attend (including your intended number of guests) to Philip Bacon (email@example.com). Alternatively please contact Amanda Hastings, BESA Social Secretary, (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Camilla Robertson at HFW (email@example.com).
- Finn Trophy – 21 Sept, Isle of Wight
This annual event traditionally brings together two or three flotillas of ocean-going boats that compete as teams in name of The Baltic Exchange, Lloyd’s of London, and sometimes The London Stock Exchange. This year, we have agreed with several other City-based sailing clubs to mutually open our summer / post-summer events, so we might have other teams competing, e.g. John Lewis or The Portcullis Club.
On Friday 20th September evening, crews gather in Cowes for dinner and light refreshment, in concentration for the athletic feats of the following day. Early on the 21st, a starting gun will see the flotillas race off neck to neck round a dedicated course within the Solent, which will be shorter than last years’ Nab Tower race. After the racing and the traditional ‘apres’ social on Marina and nearby watering holes, Saturday evening the motley crews regenerate themselves into a glamorous gathering for Dinner at the Royal Yacht Squadron and perhaps prize giving, if the winners can be decided.
Companies or groups may enter boats and crews in the Racer or Cruiser categories for Team Baltic; if you are not part of one, please get in touch as we will be seeking to accommodate individuals on Team Baltic boats in need of crew. There will be Special Provisions for Young Baltic Association members.
If you have never sailed, don’t be daunted – this is a perfect chance to try it out!
Please contact Philip Bacon for further information and entry forms.
- BEGS Company Cup 2019
This year’s Baltic Exchange Golfing Society Company Cup will be held on Friday 11 October at West Herts Golf Club.
The event is open to teams of two shipbroking golfers. The best combined Stableford score will be the winner.
The Company Cup format is pretty simple, but has a few minor rules:
- Teams of two, competing in four-balls over one round.
- Stableford scoring system, with the combined score counting to each two-person team.
- Each team does NOT have to consist of employees from the same company, clients/visitors are very welcome.
- Teams can be two principals from the same company or different offices, or a principal and a broker or two brokers.
- There is no limit on the number of teams any one company wishes to enter, the more the merrier.
- Baltic Exchange is sponsoring the hole in one on the Par 3’s, with a main prize of a car and other prizes on the rest
- There will be additional prizes for nearest the pin, longest drive in the rough and longest drive on the fairway.
- Official handicap certificates are not required, but anyone playing off 24 or higher that does not have an official club handicap cannot score more than 30 points.
- This event can contribute as one of the sports for the overall David Bradley Cup winner.
Anyone interested in registering for the Company Cup, please contact James Pendered, it will be on a first-come-first-served basis.
Format (all times are approximate & subject to change)
Noon – Arrival time, bacon roll & coffee
13:15 – Tee off for 18 holes from the first tee
18:30 – Drinks/prize giving during dinner
The cost will be £80/player
Herts WD3 3GG
Telephone: 01923 236484 / Pro Shop: 01923 236866