Almost exactly one year ago today, on January 13, 2023, we published our “forecast issue”, a Weekly Opinion that listed what we thought could be the five key tanker market drivers for 2023 (“Our 2023 Crystal Ball”). In this issue we will review each of those projections and determine which ones we got right, which ones we got wrong and which ones we did not see coming.
Regarding the key developments that we missed; we have to start with the conflict in the Middle East. Nobody predicted Hamas’s attack, Israel’s response, and the Houthi’s subsequently attacking vessels transiting through the Bab el-Mandeb straits. This had an impact on the market in the fourth quarter of 2023 and continues to be a factor this year. We also did not foresee the OPEC+ production cuts as well as the growing tension between Venezuela and Guyana.
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