This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

Thousands Of Rusting Ship Hulls Are A Fitting Tribute To The Speculative Market Bubble

Tyler Durden's picture


The Daily Mail recently made waves with a photo exposing what it called the "ghost fleet of the recession" where hundreds of ships were shown on anchor off the straits of Singapore, doing nothing except rusting: a tribute to the unprecedented collapse in world trade, the bulk of which is seaborne, and the huge amount of excess slack in shipping.

Zero Hedge decided to probe this idea further, and for that we took advantage of the very useful real time ship tracker functionality provided by (any reader who has Google Earth can easily replicate these results using the following data file).

The results

First we wanted to show how traditionally functioning critical routes are still heavily trafficked, as can be seen by the large amount of green highlights in the following snapshots (green indicates operating ship, red denotes a ship out of spot/charter and currently unused).



Red Sea (one hopes the Somali pirates do not have access to Vesseltracker):

Yet where it gets interesting is when one scours for comparable packets of inactivity as that captured by the Daily Mail. As a first example of just how bad it really is, we recreate the image of the Singapore Strait that is shown on the picture at the top:

What is surprising is how prevalent this pattern is around the globe. Some comparable areas we discovered were the following:

Coast of Britain:

Qinhungdao (Chinese coast) - note the pattern that allows any active ships to actually enter the harbor. This is probably not a good indication of the Baltic Dry Index to going up any time soon.

Putuo - another representation of Chinese overzealousness in building drybulkers:

Belgian coast:

Dubai: the gateway to the middle east is essentially closed. All that expensive oil, and nobody is transporting it...At least if you look closely you can see some very nice man made islands, that are the only remnants of the great Dubai experiment in recreating the US credit/real estate bubble:

Most shocking is the situation around the Bosporus: the transit corridor between Russia and the rest of the world is orders of magnitude worse than even the Singapore case.

As for our own back yard, this is the situation in the Gulf of Mexico: a sea of red. One wonders how many of these ships are merely filled with crude, happily waiting for oil to hit $145 one more time.

The bottom line: world trade has collapsed, shipping lines, once flourishing, have become graveyard archipelagos populated by rusting ship skeletons. Yet all of this is beyond the land, and thus far from sight. Of course, who needs trade when you have a speculative market trading in its own bubble, hitting yearly highs day after day, thanks only and exclusively to the Chairman's printing press. It is a pity these ships can not sail in the sea of hundred dollar bills that is being created each and every day at the Federal Reserve, whose only use these days it seems is to buy junker stocks and to feed the algos that lift whatever offers are stupid enough to float in the equity market.


- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:14 | 71328 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Maybe those tanker ships are there to keep oil low while they take the dollar lower.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 06:45 | 72116 Spartacus
Spartacus's picture

The World market has been hijacked by Central Bank Heads Fraudsters(baring Israel and Japan) and Banks headed by Thieves.

The rallies are orchestrated. They will do it till the pubic starts putting lead into their heads. I am waiting with a smile on my face. It takes time ,guys. It will happen.

Look at the change in my belief. A reformed Bankster.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 07:31 | 72130 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Are you insane? Governor of the Bank of Israel Stanley Fischer directed Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's PhD thesis.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 10:57 | 72197 Chumly
Chumly's picture

Den of Thieves; Brood of Vipers!

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 04:28 | 73186 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

... OR maybe it is because the docks at Brani can only handle 9 births at a time as far as unloading/loading cargo and Keppel 14 (not all major ships); plus the sorting of the cargo on the dock to be delivered to another ship.

So the queue at the bank.. or a traffic jam or queuing for you take-off time at an airport due to high traffic is a representation of the world industry screeching to a halt? this is stupid guys.

Singapore has half the world's crude oil being refined and transported out of Singapore. They can only dock max 23 ships at Jurong one point in time and load them with oil.. which takes considerable time.. what do boats do while this happens? they wait.. and they anchor because of high traffic congestion, else they float away..

And then Singapore has the world's busiest port.. one boat coming in every 5 minutes, what do the other boats do when all the docks are taken? They wait and anchor. Why do they have to wait their turn, because no captain is permitted to drive their boat in Singapore waters without a certified pilot who has over 1000 hours in Singapore waters.. and what do they have to do? They have to anchor...

Do you know how big Singapore is? And what little space the boats have to park at? oh .. yeah. it is high density. Have those boats been there before the economic meltdown? YES.. i have lived in Singapore for 5 years and seen the exact same amount of boats parked there every year - and taken pics of it every year. Do some research on how the shipping industry works guys.. this is just stupid.

Same goes for all other major ports.. there is high traffic and high density.. and so Ships have to wait. Singapore has the most advanced shipping IT system.. in fact they are doing so well right now they are expanding with another 16 birthing points. This is why Malaysia wants to compete with Singapore by opening up a new port and building a canal through Malaysia..

A quick wikipedia search explains everything (note the last sentence):

The Port of Singapore refers to the collective facilities and terminals that conduct maritime trade handling functions in Singapore's harbours and which handle Singapore's shipping. Currently the world's busiest port in terms of total shipping tonnage, it also tranships a fifth[1] of the world's shipping tainers as the world's busiest container port, half of the world's annual supply of crude oil, and is the world's busiest transshipment port. It was also the busiest port in terms of total cargo tonnage handled until 2005, when it was surpassed by the Port of Shanghai. Thousands of ships drop anchor in the harbour, connecting the port to over 600 other ports in 123 countries and spread over six continents.

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 09:07 | 73240 blindfaith
blindfaith's picture

hey thanks for all that spew.  Maybe if you identified yourself we might understand your intentions, or what you are selling. I think your info is from an old edition of Britania.   Anonymos, why you could be anyone with a special interest in Sinapore or China like Mr. Jim Rogers. Yes?

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 10:00 | 73271 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I appreciate the rant, but if the ships were in a "queue," they would still be green...under charter...

But we're all impressed that you can look "Port of Singapore" up on Wikipedia.

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 17:24 | 73882 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

exactly correct!
Ships under charter, waiting, are "green".
Only an empty ship is shown in red. And wow there are many!

Sat, 09/19/2009 - 17:23 | 74467 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Sorry to burst the bubble for all 3 of you, read post #71854

I have no agenda, I live in Singapore as a foreigner and have looked at the ships for over 5 years, and just recently got my own boating license. I just want facts represented, put things in context!

In fact the traffic has been quite light.. and certainly there has not been a major increase in boats anchored in Singapore waters. Singapore authority wouldn't permit it, because of the limited maritime space and the busy port. Please check google maps, or google "ships outside Sentosa Siloso Beach".. check pictures from 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007.. and you will see that the exact same amount of anchored vessels. Anyone who has flown in or out of Singapore for the last few years can take pics of this from their plane that land at Changi Airport. I invite you to fly to Singapore and check it out yourself.

What does me being registered have anything to do with my credibility? or me having an agenda? Look at your own username, do they build any credibility whatsoever?? talk about building a straw man..

Sat, 09/19/2009 - 17:48 | 74478 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Your not even worth the time. Look at the picture posted by this website.. Singapore is the world's busiest transshipment port. Why would the image posted on this website have 21 green dots only - when several credible sources, even when can show you Singapore has several hundred ships coming in every day? All the green dots have a bearing... does an anchored ship have a bearing? NO..

Why did I link to wikipedia.. just to show the lack of research done by the people who posted this article. They couldn't even look the port of Singapore up on wikipedia and do some background research first before they jumped to a false conclusion.. neither the premises nor the conclusion of their argument is valid or true.

Thu, 10/15/2009 - 15:10 | 100029 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I am a singaporean and the office that I am working now is facing PSA directly.. There are no ships waiting to undock at the ports here since lehman when bankrupted last year.

I still have a pic taken back in 2007 with all the cranes in PSA busy unloading containers.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:14 | 71329 Joe Sixpack
Joe Sixpack's picture

The globalist one-world financial system is coming to a screeching halt.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 16:15 | 71523 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Only in preparation to proceed to the next level. IMO the "solution" will be an order of globalization that has never been seen before. Meanwhile, much more pain will come first, to create a more receptive environment.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:35 | 71995 keehotee
keehotee's picture

We are all free to turn our collective backs on this charade at any time- in fact, if we do in sufficient numbers we may be saved.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 08:38 | 72159 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

yes we are and yes we may.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:15 | 71330 Haywood Jablowme
Haywood Jablowme's picture


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:15 | 71332 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:16 | 71333 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Side note:

Barges are not tracked by this system. You can say who cares but there are barges out there that can carry in excess of 200,000 barrels of product. That was the racket during the price boom. Load up barges send them out to anchor till after inventory and then bring them back. Now, if they are used for storage, they won't pop up on these types of systems...unless you know what Tug they are mated with.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 10:26 | 72280 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

What is the best way to find the matched tug? Any thoughts of the path to go.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:16 | 71334 Stevm30
Stevm30's picture

Good stuff.  It'd be interesting to see a side by side comparison with September 2005... to get some sort of baseline.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:28 | 71356 Assetman
Assetman's picture


We really have no reference to determine whether current activity is normal or not.

I would expect to see better dispersion of ships in a more normal period... but where's the evidence????

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:32 | 71365 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

Well there is the price baseline: now you get a 90% discount for charters (ref:dailymail article). assuming that supply and demand correlate with price, then there had to be a corresponding, maybe not 90% but large dropoff in demand, in order to affect price this way.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:00 | 71417 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Should we consider 05' as being normal?

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 08:44 | 72164 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

our evidence is not scientific, but only a personal anecdote:

while hiking on llama island in HK not too long ago with a lifelong resident, we looked out into the south china sea and he mentioned that he had never seen so many ships just sitting there.

we agreed that it must be a floating limbo out there.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 09:36 | 72209 Chumly
Chumly's picture

Here's another anecdote:  Anyone with half a brain who casually observes East-West rail traffic on the BNSF line, say through Flagstaff for example, would tell you that there is less traffic these days.  Most of the same observers would also tell you that most trains on those lines carry shipping containers from China.  So, while ZH may not have a have a statistical "baseline" for their current observations, most astute individuals here understand what is going on - the obvious.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:17 | 71336 Daedal
Daedal's picture

The last time I saw a similar frenzy to buy stocks was in '99, no joke. Every cubicle-occupier has a stock tip... GNW, C, etc.

This is no bull market -- this is the running of the bulls, with many runners about to get skewered.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:15 | 71685 ghostfaceinvestah
ghostfaceinvestah's picture

I said this weeks ago and some people chose not to believe me - the S&P will go to 1200 by the end of the year, and could easily reach 2000 by the end of next year, if the Fed keeps printing dollars like they are.

But the higher it goes, the more it will fall.  Think shorting the NASDAQ in March 2000, that is the kind of opportunity there is going to be.  Just wait until the Fed stops printing.

I wonder if the Fed realizes that their money printing doesn't produce inflation anymore, it produces asset bubbles?  Nah, that would be giving them too much credit.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:10 | 71759 Big Al
Big Al's picture

But suppose the FED never stops printing money.   As long as "core" inflation stays under 5% per cent, Ben will keep the presses running.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:20 | 71342 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Brilliant work!

Obviously is a serious threat to national security and must be shut down at once.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:21 | 71343 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

this seems wrong - from

Barclays creates $12bn credit vehicle

By Sam Jones

Published: September 16 2009 16:26 | Last updated: September 16 2009 16:26

Barclays has unveiled a plan to sell more than $12bn of risky credit assets to a company it has created to try to reduce the risk of further writedowns.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 16:16 | 72661 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Wrong? Fraudulent? Shady as all hell?

A company it created, so does Barclays still own this company??? Are private investors expected to buy shares in this 'risky' company?

This is just a weather balloon, they want to see if they can do it for 12 bn now, and 12 tn later!

Tue, 10/27/2009 - 23:45 | 112634 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

>>Barclays has unveiled a plan to sell more than $12bn of risky credit assets to a company it has created to try to reduce the risk of further writedowns.<<

Enron did the same thing to eliminate their money losing businesses and get them off of their books onto another company's books. The trouble was Enron owned the other company. Ken Lay went to prison over this and I hear his jail cell is available if the President of Barclays wants a new vacation home. LOL

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:21 | 71344 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

There is something off about the Bosphorus one. There is no way there would be so many idle ships parked in what is essentially the heart of Istanbul (or clogging of the Golden Horn for that matter). What exactly are the red dots representing? I know ships often have to WAIT quite a while to get through the Bosphorus.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:49 | 71397 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

"Red denotes a ship out of spot/charter and currently unused."

As in idle, not earning its keep, going nowhere fast. If a tanker were filled with oil and just sitting there, it would not show up as a red dot because it would currently be under contract/charter. 

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:55 | 71407 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Ok, take a look at one of the red dots on the bosphorus. Named the "Bosphorus Princess".

That's a tiny dinner cruise boat!

Not exactly an "idle cargo ship".

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:20 | 71448 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

Phew! For a second there I was scared shitless that this story was true or carried any importance but with your crack up journalism I now see my errant ways. If the Bosphorus Princess is one of the red dots then the thousands of remaining red dots are equally meaningless. Thanks anon!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:59 | 71747 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

There is no monopoly on ships names so more than one ship can have the same name. Since this data is being collected near real time from on board equipment, you won't find this equipment on small ships.

Vesseltracker sells this data (with much more detail) to shipping companies and other interested parties. Small local ships are not in need of these services and won't outfit their boats with the equipment needed.

The info is as detailed as direction the ship is traveling, the speed, whether is docked or anchored etc. The confirmation is the Baltic Dry index, which has collapsed. Prices only drop 90% when supply far exceeds demand.

I downloaded the data into Google Earth and spent 2 hours looking at various ports around the world and it's easy to see patterns. The major pattern is that many of the idle boats are docked along rivers and inland seas.

Scale down to very close and you will be amazed how many ships are idle. Often one red dot is actually covering 5 or 10 boats that only come into focus when you get closer.

Entire countries don't participate in this program such as Japan and Russia but you can still learn a lot from looking. This isn't the one piece of the puzzle but other data back this up.

It's clear that this illustration is very compelling.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:40 | 71785 Jim_Rockford
Jim_Rockford's picture

How did Subic Bay look ?  I heard a few months ago it was a parking lot.

Also, what kind of oil demand decline do you think we are looking at as the sole result of so many ships anchored up and (presumably) not running their mains thus not consuming bunker oil?

Also, if all these ships are not combusting bunker oil, doesn't that translate into a huge "carbon credit" in regards to not only CO2, but smog, other greenhouse gases, and pollutants normally emitted in the boom cycle?


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 20:59 | 71848 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

You don't need these stupid shots, if anyone cares, just shout, I can take a high resolution photos of the shoreline in one of the asian cities mentioned and send it around for your appreciation, I have been writing about these ships anchored here repeatedly but no one seems to care

Sat, 09/19/2009 - 17:53 | 74483 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

So can I, and I can compare them with photos 5 years ago.. and show you it is the exact same amount! In fact you don't even need me to do that.. just google it yourself! Plenty of blogs that document it..

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:59 | 71412 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

How about this one?

These are commuter ferries, people!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:22 | 71453 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

Should read, commuter ferry*

Stop trying to discredit this story with anectodal evidence. It is an insult to logic that this disinformation tactic is even used here.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:34 | 71469 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


I'm not trying to discredit the "story": anyone with half a brain knows that global trade is in the shitter and that green shoots feed on QE BS.

I'm trying to point out is that there is something weird about the BOSPHORUS picture in particular. It is clear that the red dots there include a number of small local boats/ferries for some reason (Error? Who knows, I don't run

All I'm saying is that using the Bosphorus as the most "shocking" example dilutes the credibility of this otherwise important story.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 16:01 | 71506 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

Ok good to know.

I understand the desire to hold this site to a higher standard of scrutiny since it is one of the few entities that does the same for our financial and political systems.

However as I mentioned in a reply which I think was also addressed to you, the point here was not precision but instead a demostration of the sheer volume of the problem, that is largely being shuffled to the side.

But as usual, it is a good thing that you along with others provide su with critical eye for all the information here.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 16:28 | 71535 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

No worries guys...

The oversupply of these vessels will be soon be remedied through the "Cash for Clunker Ships" program.

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 18:37 | 73980 i.knoknot
i.knoknot's picture

when a million people march on washington (9/12/09) and it barely gets a breath of media notice, we all need to wary of important things being 'shuffled to the side'.

ever vigilant, seek and spread fact, find the truth, etc.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 16:07 | 71512 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


Second that. I live very close to the Bosphorus, and see
many ships (not commuter ferries, there are literally
hundreds of commuter ferries daily taking place across
the Bosphorus, fyi) are idle waiting to pass through the straits.

ZH readers, do not forget that Bosphorus is home to Istnabul, a city of 10+million people living, so the ships always take their time before and during passing the Bosphorus.

TD, you can track down the port activity of major trade cities (just like Calculated Risk does with LA/Long Beach Port for both export and import year over year), and that would give us another metric to understand what's going on with the world trade.

Keep up the good word. Long time follower, first (or make that second) time poster.



Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:29 | 71628 Tax Man
Tax Man's picture

You are right. If you have an idle ship, you want to place it strategically so you are close to possible ports were the chance of a contract is high. Singapore, Gulf of Aden and Bosphorus are such places. You would expect to find most of the idle ships there. You absolutly need a YoY picture to make any sense of the data.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:57 | 71488 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 21:07 | 71854 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Actually, red denotes a ship that hasn't moved recently, it does not reflect whether or not it is under charter. The ship could be full of oil, the crew could be onshore picking up wenches (and not being paid, ergo lower expenses). I think that was the point Anon was trying to get at - does the red reflect "movement" or "out-of-charter". TD actually seems to describe it both ways, but indicates that red indicates the ship "Is Not Moving".

I'm not in front of a Bloomberg, but they have a similar function, and I think the "non-moving" ships indicate a ship that hasn't moved in 24 hours. Don't trust my memory - someone check that and correct me.

Obviously, a ship that just hasn't moved recently is a lot different than a ship that is not earning any money at all. I'm not disagreeing with the conclusion, and frankly do not have an informed opinion, except that the interpretation of the data presented here is not 100% accurate, or at best, conflicts with the data provider's ( own definition. HOWEVER, the AIS data does provide Draught and Cargo, and these could be used in conjunction to confirm there was cargo; further analysis is likely required to make a more informed decision.


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:27 | 71987 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

The indicator is actually a bit more specific than merely 'not moving'. If one looks at the red icons closely, one will note that there are actually three different states shown; 'anchoring' (an anchor symbol), 'waiting' (an 'X') and 'moored' (a knotted rope). Presumably 'anchoring' implies recent movement, 'waiting' implies 'waiting to dock, to load/unload, or to depart the area' and 'moored' implies 'tied up with no imminent destination'. The majority of the ships around both Singapore and Istanbul are 'moored', as are many in other areas...

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:37 | 71996 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

The indicator is actually a bit more specific than merely 'not moving'. If one looks at the red icons closely, one will note that there are actually three different states shown; 'anchoring' (an anchor symbol), 'waiting' (an 'X') and 'moored' (a knotted rope). Presumably 'anchoring' implies recent movement, 'waiting' implies 'waiting to dock, to load/unload, or to depart the area' and 'moored' implies 'tied up with no imminent destination'. The majority of the ships around both Singapore and Istanbul are 'moored', as are many in other areas...

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:23 | 71345 tallystick
tallystick's picture

double post

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:21 | 71346 tallystick
tallystick's picture

I hope the real reason for stockpiling oil and commodities isn't preperation for an imminent strike on Iran that will close the routes shown above that still have green dots.  It seems the potential "players" in such a conflict are the ones that have all the red dots outside their ports. Dread................

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:21 | 71347 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

good catch

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:21 | 71348 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

hollllly shiet! this is so bad! stocks have no choice but to go up. Volatility sellers are going to be happy.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:23 | 71349 Gabriel Gray
Gabriel Gray's picture

Lies! all Lies!

These picture are all doctored, just like the ACORN films!


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:22 | 71350 Sardonicus
Sardonicus's picture

yeah but it's better than expected, right?

Fri, 09/18/2009 - 18:40 | 73985 i.knoknot
i.knoknot's picture

best post of the week... LOL!!!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:26 | 71352 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

They should use some of those ships to finish Australia.

Thanks for providing top notch coverage of this important topic Tyler. This reminds me of the "life of a nymex trader" documentary where they are talking about the "real world" and how its just a distant far off place that has no bearing on anything whatsoever. Real world matters. Then again, who needs to trade stuff when you can just trade pieces of paper to boost GDP.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:25 | 71354 Gabriel Gray
Gabriel Gray's picture

HAHA.. Sugar Daddy Dating on the main page.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:29 | 71358 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

hollllly shiet! this is so bad! stocks have no choice but to go up. Volatility sellers are going to be happy.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:29 | 71359 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

As this post is out, Erin the CNBC B cup is talking about shipping and drybulk shipping greenshoots.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:31 | 71363 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

cnbs just had an 'expert' on to talk about this and he properly spun it to support the party line that this isn't so bad as it looks, and its getting better. mystery solved. now back to your regularly scheduled programming of POMO and HFT

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:32 | 71364 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Hooverville on water. Floating future housing for the homeless?

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:05 | 71425 kurt_cagle
kurt_cagle's picture

I find it amusing that in Neil Stephenson's Snow Crash the final quarter of the book took place on an "island" made of hundreds of abandoned oil tankers each filled with economic refugees. Truth is definitely stranger than fiction here.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:08 | 71671 Ned Zeppelin
Ned Zeppelin's picture

Great book.  Franchises....ummmmm.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:21 | 71615 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

more like floating FEMA camps

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:05 | 71667 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Now that's the type of humor I enjoy! Booyah!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:32 | 71367 KeyserSöze
KeyserSöze's picture

"We are out of the recession" -Ben Bernanke

Tyler you should post Australia and Brazil so we can witness all the of the "commodity demand" per our favorite perma squeezer SLP Sigma X 85 Broad Bot destroys the middle class with direct consent from the federal reserve and our puppet congress...


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:33 | 71368 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

You're wrong! We're in a new Bull Market! DJIA +110pt. 10K any day now. You're endless gnashing of teeth and whailing has to stop! Crammer says we're in a "New bull market." Buffett says the econommy has "Stopped getting worse." Why can't you wake up and see the "Green shoots?" You have lost the opportunity of a lifetime by not investing last March. The Obama Bottom (Call last March '09 that stocks were poised to rise) was genius! Just wait until those 1st time home buyer tax credits gets doubled from $8K to $15K in '10. In 2011-2012, it might even be $30K or $60K! Roll out the barrels, roll out the barrels of fun! The party's just beginning!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:06 | 71427 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Boy did your momma drop ya'? or did you sniff too much gas?

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:14 | 71762 blackebitda
blackebitda's picture

you post makes for a great stock trading tip. have you checked out the yahoo stock message boards. up, down, sideways market, makes no difference to me. pal you are right about the opportunity of a lifetime. in fact we are in a cycle not seen since 1700. not to mention stock price advances for more than 70 years, of which the last 30 years have been built on your green shoots. what a stupid shoots. warren buffett is a fraud. we here on this site are seekers of truth. with information so far left and right we are trying to find the middle ground. either add some value or go find a forum were y'all can check your brain at the login. 

i look forward to taking all the money you have made in the market, because you are a gambler and like the other minions, i will guess you sadly sell your winners too fast and keep your losing stocks too long.

stick around you might learn something around here. from what i read posters here know a thing or two about the markets. 

it would be great if we could present a demographic of the typical ZH follower. age, experience, general background, etc. done in a way to keep the anony in tact. 


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:33 | 71369 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Beyond numb now as the market "burns" higher..

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:35 | 71371 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Ha ha ha... these ships are all filled with the laid off Chinese factory workers... It's a global Trojan Horse invasion fleet if you ask me...

Course I've been wrong before

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:38 | 71380 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture


Yes! After landing its a straight dash for the printing press.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:08 | 71670 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Of course you're wrong, they're not a Trojan Horse invasion fleet....

they're our Communist Liberators,

here to restore Democracy and vanquish the Vampire Squid.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 22:23 | 71917 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

The squid has already silently washed up on Chinas shores.

JP Morgan now has 5 offices and I think Goldman has only 4. The blood funnels are out and the feeding frenzy is commencing... the new host is defenceless... may the best parasite win.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:36 | 71374 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

i suspect absolutely none of those ships will ever sail again. they are the extra ships that are no longer needed because of the deflationary demand storm that is hitting the world economies. i saw pics like that a year or more ago. it is old news. i guess someone in the state controlled media finally picked up on it....

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:37 | 71376 gptc
gptc's picture

Sweet I am glad you guys posted my tip! Story was part of an MF Global energy research report.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:42 | 71387 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Great tip kid... but now you've raised the bar for the rest of us. We'll get even.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:39 | 71381 john_connor
john_connor's picture

collapsing world trade has nothing to do with anything.  this is the new paradigm, where markets go up in perpetuity and dollars fall from the sky.  nothing else matters.  nothing.

ahh, but one thing may rock the boat.  a revolution brews in its infancy.... 

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:46 | 72002 keehotee
keehotee's picture

The revolution seems to be happening between peoples' ears, and it seems to be accelerating.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:39 | 71383 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

the thing about salt water is that it is not very forgiving to steel. therefore those ships should not and cannot sit there for extended periods of time. they have to be drydocked and cleaned from time to time. one good typhoon will make many of them become man made reefs.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:11 | 71435 Dixie Normous
Dixie Normous's picture

So steel will go through the roof because there will be a huge demand for idle ship building!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:39 | 71384 mule65
mule65's picture

The markets have already discounted the idle ship traffic!  Things can only get better -- green. 

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:42 | 71386 TwoJacks
TwoJacks's picture

future razor blades

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:44 | 71390 mightybillfuji
mightybillfuji's picture

Mr. Durden, All,


I believe a ship can be off of a charter and just heading to the next charter without being on hire. Meaning you get hired to bring crude from West africa to Philidelphia. Your next charter is from West Africa to Brazil.

This system would show you as a red dot on your way from Philidelphia to West Africa, even though you were going to a job.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:50 | 71398 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Yeah, I reiterate that there is something off with the Istanbul/Bosphorus capture. There are no idle cargo ships at the mouth of the Golden Horn- that's where the commuter ferries to and from the Asian side are!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:01 | 71411 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

The Golden Horn is big. There can be anchored idle ships there as long as they don't occupy the same space as the ferry ships.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:10 | 71431 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

1) I can guarantee you there are no anchored cargo ships at the mouth of the Golden Horn, they can't even get under the bridge:

2) Just a superficial search of some of the names represented by red dots on the Bosphorus capture turns up dinner cruise boats and commuter ferries.

I'm a huge fan of this site, but in this case I think you jumped the gun at least in terms of the Bosphorus example; I think vessel tracker's "red spot" definition is a tad broader than you've implied.

Of course, this in no way means global trade isn't going down the shitter! This just isn't a great example, that's all.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:54 | 71485 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

That's a bascule bridge.

The search is excatly what you called it, superficial and inconclusive. While there are several off hand examples of vessels that were never a big part of world trade presented here as red dots, the information presented here was never meant to be precise. It is simply a demostration of the sheer volume of the problem is approximate real world terms.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 16:05 | 71509 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Ok TumblingDice, so I guess we make peace (sorry about my Anonymous status, but I'm obviously the same Anon who has been questioning the Bosphorus capture).

Oh and the Galata bridge IS a bascule bridge, I'll give you that, but there aren't exactly major container ports upstream past it. Mostly ferries, tugboats, small barges, etc.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:05 | 71594 TumblingDice
TumblingDice's picture

Yes we have, and I did not mean my replies to you to be confrontational or dismissive in tone if that is what it looked like. Seeing as you are a fellow seeker of truth, we are on the same page here after all.

Sun, 09/20/2009 - 03:12 | 74763 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Wow anyone who agrees with your agenda is a fellow truth seeker and anyone who disagrees with your reporting is someone hiding behind anonymous, who has no credibility and who has invested interest in shipping. Your no better than Fox news!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:36 | 71639 Tax Man
Tax Man's picture

Thank you for bringing facts to people who do not know the first thing about shipping.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:56 | 71409 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

These "red dot" ships aren't going anywhere other than to get in line and wait. If the ships were in-transit, they wouldn't all be clustered around the port.

As the original article points out, this is unusual. Of course, if you are in denial, you will attempt to spin this some way other than what is obvious.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:39 | 71643 Tax Man
Tax Man's picture

You are right. The Baltic Dry tells it all. The point is that the dots are without meaning if you do not have a reference to what is a normal situation.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:11 | 71433 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Yes that could be true for some, but most of these dots are
centered around major ports and look to be parked. Also, you could just as easily say some of the green dots are on their way with a load and then will be parked again somewhere else.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:47 | 71392 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

They just talked about this on CNBC.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:14 | 71682 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Looks like CNBC is cruising ZH for a news story to refute.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:51 | 71393 Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

In a fiat money system (if the-powers-that-be so desire i.e.) nominally rising/falling "markets" have NOTHING to do with respectively good/bad conditions in the real economy. Just take a look at the Weimar, or more recently, Zimbabwe's stock market. We are, albeit slowly right now, entering hyperinflation - the fact that the MSM bullhorns are BLARING deflation just confirms this fact. We are akin to the frog sitting in a pot of water right now whose temperature is being increased (and has been increasing since 1971) ever so slowly that nobody has noticed any significant changes so far - but I can assure you with certainty that it will not be the case too long from now.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:04 | 71423 john_connor
john_connor's picture

I am warming to your theory.  Makes sense since asset values are the tail wagging the dog of our once strong economy.  its not like people can actually buy things out of cash flow from their wages.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:47 | 71394 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

But the Baltic Dry is on fire, going to the moon.

Let's use tankers as floating warehouses and claim them on the BDI. No one says that the ship actually has to reach a port to be counted in the BDI....

Those pirates could have many many big screen TV's to sell from the back of their donkey carts.

(psssstt. Which tankers are holding Goldman's Texas Tea??)

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:48 | 71395 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Very pretty pictures, but meaningless. All those rusting hulks are part of yesterday's world when there was actual commerce taking place. Commerce is so pre-2007. People like you probably thought profits were important to stocks, too. Geez. Tell me, why should anyone waste time and money chartering a ship when consumers have no money or credit to spend on anything? Equity speculation, not buying and selling actual products, is what now drives the world economy. You think the folks who have ramped DRYS up 8% today give a damn about your photos? Luddites like you are taking pictures while the gamers are getting rich in this New World of Everlasting Promise.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:04 | 71421 jesusonline
jesusonline's picture

"Very pretty pictures, but meaningless"

Your sense of sarcasm is too thick man.

"All those rusting hulks" show not only yesterday's world, but what's in store for the world betting on consumer-driven recovery. Also, a lot of the jobs that have been lost during this recession, in the developed world especially, are gone for a good number of years to come.

And "the gamers" can't win this one. The game is rigged, sure, but they'll find more and more angry people with this 'recovery' going forward.


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:50 | 71399 Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

You know things are really bad when pirates are out of work.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:54 | 71403 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Looks like a good time to buy some ships....

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:54 | 71404 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:27 | 71461 Gilgamesh
Gilgamesh's picture

Ah, that explains why OMEX is $2.00.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:55 | 71405 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

this means nothing unless you compared it to 2007. sure, there are probably more ships idled, but there are always ship idling at port waiting for the next load.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:59 | 71416 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

These ships are NOT IDLE!! They are under strict FunTracts!!!

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:03 | 71420 NRGTDR
NRGTDR's picture

looks like a lot of props setting up for filming Waterworld 2

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:04 | 71422 Stroke
Stroke's picture

As bad as I know it to be [ I'm in commercial lending ] this further reinforces my belief that we are in a holding pattern at best,and at worst??? [ at worst is somewhat rhetorical ]

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:32 | 71467 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

hold...hold....Hold...Hold...HOLD...HOLD.....oh crap...

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:11 | 71434 George the baby...
George the baby crusher's picture

See what happens when you slap tariffs on tyres.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:22 | 71454 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

America doesn't produce anything but bullshit anymore. It's become our most valued export commodity. And since we seem to be capable of manufacturing bullshit into infinity , and its piling up everywhere, these idle HoneyWagons of the Sea should be getting lots of work again soon.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:19 | 71691 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I think we still produce a lot of things, just go ask Big Ben the Bald over at the Vampire Squid building.

So far, trillions and counting...

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:27 | 71460 Schlep
Schlep's picture

A nice bit of work gathering all this data. Looks like the Xmas rush is stalled.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:34 | 71468 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

No disrespect intended towards the author or the idea, but the Singapore area and the Straits of Malacca always have that many ships anchored there. Actually looks a little light.

I've sailed through there eight times if my memory is correct. And some of the other areas don't look too unusual as well. I've seen the Sea of Japan at night looking like you could walk from ship to ship from Japan to China.

But the theory behind the above story is most likely hitting the mark. Obviously pictures can deceive.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:42 | 71481 ShankyS
ShankyS's picture

It will all end one day, and it ain't gonna be pretty. The more they drag this out and continue the charade, the worse the repercussions will be. The sheeple are waking, slowly, but they are waking.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 15:57 | 71499 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Empty ships soon to house the ever growing unemployed and unable to collect.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:36 | 71640 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I am making money in the markets.

It may rain soon so I carry an umbrella when I go out.

I do not sit at home and whine about a potentential rainfall eyes affixed to the weather channel 24 / 7...

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 20:58 | 71847 Sisyphus
Sisyphus's picture

I am so smart. S-M-R-T.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 17:46 | 71651 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Submariner paradise. Let's get a nice hotwar going and start the caravans.

Maybe another piece on the sidelined rail (GE isn't making any locomotives this year), idled and parked 18-wheelers and shipping containers, reductions in corporate fleets i.e. delivery trucks, cargo aircraft, mothballed airliner overcapacity).

Glad we are using all the stimulus for infrastructure. Will help if the fallen down economy ever gets up.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:25 | 71698 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Good story, definitely needs more investigation by detailed individual(s) willing to spend time corroborating comments posted by knowledgable ZH readers.

Definitely not an assignment for CNBC as it would require aspirations much more advanced than helping Jeff Immelt maintain his senior position as Obotomy's personal ass kisser.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:28 | 71703 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Would it be a sexual perversion to suggest that the Bosporus pic somehow resembles a.....

Oh never mind, RoboTraders sexy pics still pressing in on the back of my mind.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:45 | 71729 logistics (not verified)
logistics's picture

Only in preparation to proceed to the next level. IMO the "solution" will be an order of globalization that has never been seen before. Meanwhile, much more pain will come first, to create a more receptive environment.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 18:52 | 71737 blackebitda
blackebitda's picture

well maybe the ports are so congested that the ships have to wait their turn before going in? maybe it is night time and they are sleeping? as for base line, the pictures in this thread may be used in the future? 

i guess it is back to basics: a business needs to maintain cash flow to support its operation. with the slow down of the economy it reveals how many operations have been cash flowless. instead they have relied upon credit and stock price capital gains to support their operations. really any operation that cannot generate its own cash flow is really a sham. 

at least now it will be easier to identify the real business operations. this business environ will help all of us get back to the business of reality. so ben, so us all a favor, stop fricken printing the money so we can seperate the wheat from the chaff. 

i now call into question the legitimacy of the US stock market tape, if this keeps up, the stock exchange is going to look like these ship harbors. 

down markets suck. i get the impression that money keeps getting recycled over and over again. one buys stock and sells it yet uses the second lot of money to buy it from themselves, and then sell it higher where they buy it back from themselves again because is it possible no more buyers exist? is there any money even left on the sidelines? is all in bonds? give a trader a look. 


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:00 | 71750 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I suddenly feel the need to actually post rather than just read. Having worked on vessel automation and electronics for the last ten year I would have to say that I find it highly unlikely that a 'dinner boat' or 'commuter ferry' would have an AIS installed as they are only required under IMO rules for vessels of greater than 1600 gross tonnes or vessels engaged commercial in international commerce. Also ship in lay off tend also to go to 'alternate anchorage'. Which means out of sight of population centers.
I also do not agree with the idea that they are 'prepositioned near likely charters' I was in Olongapo two months ago and Subic bay is filled. Not much trade near there.
I would say that much of it is just finding a place that will let them lay up the ships.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:51 | 71794 Jim_Rockford
Jim_Rockford's picture

71750 - Solid info.  You taking any resumes?

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:07 | 71969 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Ahhh.......Olongapo.........lost my virginity there.........MANY years ago. Fun place.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:27 | 71988 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Actually, the maps on vesseltracker itself are much more helpful in identifying specific ships:

Not sure why, but in Istanbul a lot of small vessels apparently do have AIS installed as the link above clearly indicates (around the golden horn you can identify tugboats, passenger ships, ferries, the works).

For anyone who is into more detailed investigation, you can look at all the ports of interest on the vesseltracker site directly with icons that pop up ship type and photo.

Mon, 09/21/2009 - 03:59 | 75234 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Let me correct you, because you are completely wrong and obviously not updated:

"The International Maritime Organization's (IMO) International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) requires AIS to be fitted aboard international voyaging ships with gross tonnage (GT) of 300 or more tons, and all passenger ships regardless of size. It is estimated that more than 40,000 ships currently carry AIS class A equipment" -

300 tons is not a lot.. and certainly it is for all PASSENGER ships REGARDLESS of size. Should i repeat that again? Do any of the people who post on this site do any research at all?

Actually all recreational boats in Singapore are by law fitted with a transponder HARTS system and this is quite common around the world, boats outfitted with AIS is exempted as they are tracked with that.. that means even the smallest dingy needs to be fitted with one. If you do not, the Singapore navy will come and board you and you will be fined/possibly if your close to restricted/prohibited islands put in jail.

Don't believe me go read it yourself from the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore:

Read more here:

Penalty for failing to carry a HARTS transponder
Any person who contravenes or fails to comply with any of the conditions and restrictions subject to or upon which any license is issued under the MPA (Harbour Craft) Regulations and MPA (Pleasure Craft) Regulations shall be guilty of an offence, and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $5,000 and, in the case of a continuing offence, to a further fine not exceeding $1,000 for every day or part thereof during which the offence continues after conviction. The offence may be compounded up to a maximum fine of $500. In addition, the Port Master may cancel or suspend the license.

What it does not tell you is that a second time offense is immediate cancellation of your license.. + possible jail sentence.

And as far as ships are pre-"positioned near likely charters" - this is completely correct. Ask anyone who is in shipping. You can even see these parking spaces on nautical charts.

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 19:36 | 71780 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

whomever is working on the comparison to prior years, this needs to be adj for the number of new ship deliveries...its not just that demand is down, supply is also up so the shipping mkt is even more screwed than just trade vols stuck at lower run rate

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 20:42 | 71836 Bthewee
Bthewee's picture

God Damn Fine Reporting!!! - Thank You!!

Didn't see this ANYWHERE else on the net! 


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:03 | 71952 chindit13
chindit13's picture

Who said all America produces is bullshit? Wake up and hear Fanfare for the Common Man. America exports far more than bullshit:

---We are the world's largest exporter of scrap metal, which is sent to countries who still produce goods.

---We are the world's largest exporter of empty shipping containers.

---We are the world's largest exporter of disgarded electronics.

---We are the world's largest exporter of weapons of war, enough to put starch in the shorts of any tin pot dictator who needs something to impress the ladies that nature apparently left out. Also makes some grand parades.

---We are the world's largest exporter of condescending and paternalistic advice on how to run an economy or operate a society. In fact, we've exported so much there isn't enough left at home when we need it.

---We are the world's largest exporter of fiat currency-backed government debt instruments, and we are so ecologically friendly that we no longer actually put them on paper (much to the chagrin of two Japanese men in Italy).

---We export cul-cha, like street fashion, sit-com re-runs, slasher-movies, gangsta rap, white girl fluff melodies, action-adventure heroes, the greatest variety of porn this side of Tokyo, cigarettes---all of which are suitable for pirating---and we also export the kind of calorie and fat-laden foods that have made us the larger-than-life nation we are, with chronic "glandular problems".


Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:13 | 71976 fatboy
fatboy's picture

the malls are empty. the stimulus allowed the local governments to keep paying the bloated municipal payrolls. l

Wed, 09/16/2009 - 23:30 | 71990 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

The indicator is actually a bit more specific than merely 'not moving'. If one looks at the red icons closely, one will note that there are actually three different states shown; 'anchoring' (an anchor symbol), 'waiting' (an 'X') and 'moored' (a knotted rope). Presumably 'anchoring' implies recent movement, 'waiting' implies 'waiting to dock, to load/unload, or to depart the area' and 'moored' implies 'tied up with no imminent destination'. The majority of the ships around both Singapore and Istanbul are 'moored', as are many in other areas...

Sun, 09/20/2009 - 03:33 | 74766 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

"'anchoring' implies recent movement" - yes as much as mooring does

"moored' implies 'tied up with no imminent destination'" - yes as much as anchoring does

See how you twisted things there.. you are binding anchoring with moving, and mooring with not moving. Although both mean the exact same thing, other than the form of how they are tied fast to non moving objects, thus having stopped and not underway or making-way.

"Berthing is tying up at a pontoon or quay side or dock. Mooring is picking up a mooring buoy, which is attached to ground tackle to hold the boat in position,there are many types of these, usually concrete blocks.Anchoring is using the boats own tackle,ie, anchor warp and chain over the side normally from the bow,to hold the boat in position,there are many differing types of anchors and differing methods of anchoring.Tying up is the expression normally used to describe a harbour wall situation,where you utilise fore and aft lines to tie to the quay wall rings/bollards and resting on the ships keel in the sand at low water, with fenders and a plank on the rough side.The boat will then move up and down the harbour wall sliders with the tides in safety."

Want more definitions:

Majority of tankers in Singapore (as an example) are tied up to buoys and have specific parking spaces and would not drop anchor, they would tie to a dropped buoy. Check the Singapore maritime charts and you will see this.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 00:32 | 72037 arnoldsimage
arnoldsimage's picture

let's see... was it pythagorus, copernicus or aristotle that proved the earth is round. hmmm. oh wow! it could have been job 26: 10... 10 He has inscribed a circle on the face of the waters
at the boundary between light and darkness.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 00:47 | 72046 mattco
mattco's picture

If you look in the first map you can clearly see JPM's heating oil tanker sitting next to Goldman's Crude Fleet. You can identify them because they are the ones with the hookers on deck.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 02:46 | 72074 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


Thu, 09/17/2009 - 08:47 | 72166 Tipo anónimo
Tipo anónimo's picture

2nd the call by Taxman, et al to do a year on year study.

I downloaded the GEarth software, and found it fascinating.  I also found, in one of my limited areas of experience, that the PILE of red around Seattle includes in it Foss tugs, which aren't exactly blowing in the wind, a good number of Alaska crabbers/tenders that are either idled yearly between seasons, or have been idled since the big boom years ago.  When I'm out that way, I like to run my boat down through the shipyards.


So, as always, YoY is of paramount importance.


Just for kicks, another idled ship is the Daedalus (Lake Union, Seattle) which apparently is available for hire at $250k weekly.  Having beeen in her shade, I would testify that her decks are so exquisitely polished as to give you a mirror image of whatever 'business' negotiation you were doing at the moment.

I'd throw up a gratuitous picture, but apparently I'm not cool enough.     


Thu, 09/17/2009 - 08:52 | 72170 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Come, come Zero... you knew this a long time ago. I first got turned on to the Baltic dry index. Back in the good old days before you had your own website, only a crappy blogspot.

It's just this article gave you some pictures to prove your point.

Agent V.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 09:15 | 72185 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Looking at the same areas again today do show many vessels haven't moved but many other have. Not sure of overall accuracy of the Moored status.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 11:31 | 72366 jimbo
jimbo's picture


you have been dissed!

pls read this, courtesy of "wall street manna."

they came up with....

This is Qinhungadao, off of the Chinese coast. The red ships are idle. Oh My! Trade is collapsing!

Qinhungado is China's largest coal-transport port, yet coal prices are rising and stockpiles are dropping. Why would that happen? And didn't we just hear that China had its best shipping in July since September?

Or maybe, was it because there was an increase in coal that had been shipped by rail, and that the stormy seas had prevented ships from being loaded!

But that wouldn't fit in with Zero Edge's thesis of Armageddon. And neither did this, the action in the port of Gibraltar.

So Wall Street sets the bait, with the story in the Dail Mail, and Zero Hedge picks up on it, with their own spin. Dimwittingly, unwittingly, the anti-Wall Street blog, becomes their own pawn!

Meanwhile, the play is to ignore both stories, and especially ignore Zero Edge, and instead, buy the shipping stocks.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 11:58 | 72399 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Something's wrong with this data. It shows the Circle Line XVI "moored" in the middle of the Hudson. Similarly the "John F Kennedy" shows in red in the middle of NY harbor. This is the Staten Island Ferry. It is enroute.

Thu, 09/17/2009 - 13:42 | 72525 Joseph Knecht
Joseph Knecht's picture
China Jan.-Aug. Ship Orders Down 82%

Conditions will remain very difficult for the global shipping industry in the next two or three  years.


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!