Although the container industry experienced smaller growth in 2013, in line with the poorer global trade forecast, Drewry’s Container Leasing report showed that the world’s fleet of operationally leased containers grew annually by almost 11 percent throughout 2011-12. During this period, the industry experienced unprecedented fleet expansion in the first six months of both 2011 and 2012, but subsequently slowed throughout the closing part of the year. This can be attributed to the fact that there was a build-up of new-build vessels, which subsequently caused a decline in investment in the maritime shipping sector.
“… the box lease industry still remains generally better placed than it was prior to the downturn in 2009. Before this watershed year, leasing companies had been losing out to the shipping industry’s own aggressive box procurement programme, which resulted in a relatively weak and erratic growth rate for the rental fleet and steady loss in terms of its ownership share.”- Editor of Drewry’s Container Leasing Report.
Although 2013 will see a smaller overall increase than it did in 2011 and 2012, container industry analysts believe that the lessors’ fleet growth for the first half of 2013 will be matched in the second half of the year, and still offers plenty of reason for investors to review container investment opportunities. Clearly demonstrating strong industry growth, the end of Q1 2013 saw the global container fleet increase by more than one million TEU globally, including 800,000 TEU of leased containers. This first-quarter figure topped the lessors’ earlier growth of 700,000 TEU in 2011, as well as the rise of 400,000 TEU in 2012, and further illustrates how cargo container investments profit from economic growth and prosperity around the world.
In 2014, with a containerized system that is comprised of over 27 million TEU and transported in more than 14 million vessel slots throughout the world, the investment community can expect that the Containerized Transportation Industry will continue to be a major contributor to international and domestic growth worldwide and in doing so; will offer many benefits and advantages for investors to profit from. After all, in the years leading up to 2014, the container leasing business has consistently outperformed the general S&P 500 index as measured by the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE:SPY) and the transportation index as measured by the iShares Dow Jones Transport Average ETF (NYSE:IYE).