Hoegh Autoliners is heading towards the new year on a hot streak.
The Oslo car carrier owner has only seen freight rates increase in the back half of 2023 and recorded its second-highest ever rates in November.
“November was another strong month for Hoegh Autoliners,” said chief executive Andreas Enger.
“We continue to see the effect of contract renewals at sustainable rate levels and a continuous strong spot market in all our trades.”
In November, the company said it transported 1.3m cbm of cargo on a prorated basis, earning gross freight rates of $95.50 per cbm and net freight rates of $83.60 per cbm.
The cargo figures were in line with the previous three months, but down slightly from May and July, when volumes hit 1.4m cbm.
Those figures were the second-highest on record, Enger said.
They also continued an upward trend that began in June, when gross freight rates were $85.60 per cbm and net freight rates $73.70 per cbm.
Fearnley Securities analyst Oystein Vaagen said the reported rates come in above his fourth-quarter estimates of $80 per cbm, propelled by a hot market.
“The effect of contract renewals is evident in the numbers, with substantial transport volume coming up for renewal in the coming six to nine months,” he said.
“We estimate 2024 to be another strong year for the car carrier segment and reiterate our view that [Hoegh Autoliners] may increase their distributions heading into 2024.”
In the third quarter, the dividend totalled NOK 784m ($72m) or just under NOK 4.11 per share, good for half of the company’s net profit.
In late trading on Thursday, the Oslo-listed shares had slipped NOK 1.25 to NOK 92.30.
Despite the dip, the shares remain at elevated levels versus the rest of the year.
Their 52-week high was NOK 94.55 in late October.