Clarkson's share price sinks after it warns profits will be "materially lower" this year

Helen Cahill
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The shipbroking giant is waiting for confidence to return to the industry (Source: Getty)

Shipbroker Clarkson's share price fell by a fifth in early trading after the group said its profits this year will be "materially lower" than last year.

The group said global economic uncertainty and an imbalance between supply and demand in shipping and offshore meant the industry "remains depressed", despite the recent recovery of the oil price.

Offshore broking has regained some activity, but Clarkson said it would take time for confidence to come back, and transaction volumes to increase.

Read more: Why Goldman thinks its $50 oil forecast could be wrong

The shipbroking giant said the business remains "robust", but that the Clarksea index - which indicates daily charter rates - was 30 per cent lower in the first half of 2016 compared to the same period last year.

The Baltic Dry Index, based on reports of charters from London shipbrokers, has also tumbled year-on-year, and was "testing all-time lows during the first quarter of 2016", Clarkson said.

Read more: Oil and gold emerge triumphant from first half market turmoil

The FTSE 250 group said: "Whilst recent strengthening of the US dollar against sterling, if sustained, will offer some limited enhancement to reported profits, the board nevertheless now anticipates that as a consequence of the challenges referred to above profits for 2016 will be materially lower than the fully year 2015."

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