Rickmers Maritime Trust reported first quarter net income increased 72 percent from a year ago to $9.3 million, driven mainly by cash flow gains on interest rate movements.
The Singapore-based shipowner's revenue dipped 3 percent to $35.9 million from $37.2 million in the same period in 2010, of which $1.3 million was attributable to one of its vessels earning $8,288 per day on a reduced rate charter to Chile's CSAV during the quarter compared with $21,000 a year ago.
The ship, Kaethe C.Rickmers, began a one year time charter on March 25 at a net daily rate of $23,888.
Rickmers, which cancelled a $920 million container ship order in 2010, said its fleet of 16 vessels is fully employed through 2011 at an average daily time charter rate of $25,750.
The company, which operates ships for the Hamburg-based Rickmers Group, cautioned container trade growth, currently running ahead of capacity, is subject to risks from global economic developments.
"Downside risks include instability in Middle East/North Africa, state of recovery in Japan, high oil prices, threat of piracy and sovereign credit risks."
Upside possibilities include improving labor markets, strong corporate earnings and higher public spending.
Freight rates have come under renewed downward pressure as bunker prices are rising, with negative effect on liner operators' earnings.
-- Contact Bruce Barnard at firstname.lastname@example.org.