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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Statistical investigation of the ocean charter market Proctor, Irving Leroy

Abstract

Most studies in the area of ocean shipping are descriptive. Certain aspects of tramp shipping have been subjected to empirical analysis, but few authors have been concerned with an objective study of the behaviour of charter rates. The major purpose of this thesis is to analyse the behaviour of tramp shipping rates over the years 1960 -1968, and to discover what impact the forces of supply and demand had on voyage and time charter rates during those years. To accomplish this objective, the thesis is divided into two distinct parts: the first half of the text is confined to identifying the various markets that exist in the shipping industry today. Incorporated with this discussion are pertinent facts and figures that exemplify the changing pattern of vessel ownership within the industry, as well as the impressive growth and diversification of the various facets of ocean shipping. The second half of the text is concerned with a statistical analysis of tramp charter rates, ie., voyage and time charters. Monthly data were gathered on several variables of supply and demand in the shipping industry. The relationships between these variables and charter rates were examined in four distinct categories: 1. between the various categories of rates, ie., voyage, time and tanker rates. 2. the relationship between laid up tonnage and charter rates. 3. the relationship between charter rates and the various stages of activity in the shipyards, ie., ship ordering, ship launching and ship completions. 4. the relationship between the demand for shipping space, as indicated by world sea trade, and charter rates. A number of hypotheses concerning the economic behaviour of charter rates with respect to these variables were formulated and tested by means of a series of multiple regression models to determine whether these hypotheses could be accepted or rejected. Initial tests produced what appeared to be some significant results. However, these proved to have high autocorrelation in the residuals. Following more rigorous testing to remove the autocorrelation, the relationships broke down and the hypotheses had to be rejected.

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