is afinancial service, which forms part of the globalshipping industry.are specialist intermediaries/negotiators (i.e.brokers) betweenshipownersandchartererswho useshipsto, or between buyers and sellers of vessels.

Some brokerage firms have developed into large companies, incorporating departments specialising in shippings various sectors,e.g.Dry Cargo Chartering, Tanker Chartering, Container Chartering, Sale & Purchase, Demolition, Futures and Research; otherboutiqueshipbroking firms concentrate on specific sectors of the shipping market.

The principal shipping and shipbroking centres worldwide areLondonNew York CitySingaporeandTokyo, as well as where many shipowners are based such asOsloandAthens, especially since theAthens Olympicsof 2004. Other places continue to develop in international shipping services, such asHong KongandShanghaiDelhiandMumbaiCopenhagenGenevaGenoaHamburgandParisinEurope; and inNorth AmericaConnecticutHoustonandMontrealare important shipbroking centres.

Until the late 20th century, it was commonplace for shipbrokers to cover more than one discipline, although nowadays the vast majority of shipbrokers specialize in a specific sector. Like many financial services, historically shipbroking grew out of the, becoming established at the Baltic Exchange;[1]among its most famous members beingErnest Simpson, ex-husband ofThe Duchess of Windsor(died 1972), andAlderman the Lord Mountevans.

TheInstitute of Chartered Shipbrokerssets educational standards throughout the industry worldwide, whoseFellowsare accorded the privilege of using the post-nominal letters FICS.

Sale & Purchase (S&P) brokers handle the buying and selling of existing vessels in the secondhand market or contract new ships (callednewbuildingsin industryparlance) fromshipbuilding yards. S&P brokers promote opportunities and discuss market trends with shipowners, charterers, investors and bankers, as well as reporting on market sales, vessel values, market trends and activity. When a shipowner has a vessel to sell or is looking for a vessel to acquire, the shipbroker will scour the market for buyers, or for suitable sales candidates, discuss with potential counterparties or their broker the main points of the sale transaction and eventually negotiate all of the details, usually based on a standard contract. During such proceedings, shipbrokers not only negotiate the price of the vessel on behalf of their principals but also all the logistical details for the transfer of the title and the vessel itself to the buyers (new owners), including the banking arrangements. During any negotiation minor disputes may occur which are to be handled in accordance with market fluctuation,i.e.the market may be moving in favor of the buyer (vessel price is softening) or in favor of the seller (vessel price is strengthening) giving each party a potential reason to cancel the transaction. When shipbrokers act on behalf of passive investors or financial buyers, they may also have to find time charter employment for the vessel and assist with practical arrangements such as the appointment of ship managers. Some S&P brokers specialize in the sale of ships forscrap, requiring a different set of skills and contacts.

Dry Cargo brokers are typically specialists in the chartering ofBulk carriers, and are engaged to act either for a shipowner looking for employment for a ship, or a charterer with a cargo to be shipped. Dry Cargo brokers maintain largedatabasesofvesselpositions, cargoes and rates, paying constant attention to the direction of themarketsso as to advise their clients accurately as to how to maximize profits or minimize expenses. Dry Cargo shipping can, in general terms, be categorized by Vessel size: namely,Bulkerssuch asCapesizesPanamaxesandHandysize. Each size of vessel suits different types ofcargoand trade routes/ports. Many owners, charterers and brokers tend to specialize in one or other of these sectors.

Tanker brokers specialize in thecharteringofTankers, which requires a different skillset, knowledge and contacts from Dry Cargo broking. Tanker brokers may specialize incrude oilgasoil productsorchemical tankers. Tanker brokers similarly negotiate maritime contracts, known asCharter Parties. The main terms of negotiation arefreighthireanddemurrage.

Oilbeing a fast moving trade, freight rates for crude oil tanker charters are most commonly based on the; the Worldscale Association publishes flat rates annually.[2]

For some specific voyages, such as named voyages (i.e.from A to B) and for specialist ships, likeLNGtankers (a highly specialized sector of the tanker market), freight rates can be agreed on a lumpsum (or dollar per ton) fixed rate between both parties. but it is very hard nowadays. there is no scope.

Container brokers specialize in the chartering ofcontainer shipsand provide container shipowners and charterers with market-related information and opportunities.

Shipping Futures brokers specialise in negotiating.

Huber, Mark (2001). Ch. 9: Chartering and Operations.

Tanker operations: a handbook for the person-in-charge (PIC)

. Cambridge, MD: Cornell Maritime Press.ISBN0-87033-528-6.

Turpin, Edward A.; McEwen, William A. (1980). Ch. 18: United States Navigation Laws and Ships Business.

. Centreville, MD: Cornell Maritime Press.ISBN0-87033-056-X.

The Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers

Association of Shipbrokers and Agents

Commercial item transport and distribution

Service companies of the United Kingdom

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