I have said before that Darwin would have married Diana, as her adaptive prowess undoubtedly would have piqued his interest. Since Darwin was not afraid to tell it like it is despite contrary prevailing beliefs, I suspect he may have appreciated this quality in Diana as well.
Seven of Diana's 13 Panamax class vessels are now hired for rates below $20,000 per day. In the initial phases of the BDI collapse, I posited that shippers without spot market exposure could bridge the disruption if it proved short-lived. It has not, and comments from Diana's management in the conference call suggest an increasingly bleak medium-term outlook for the dry bulk industry at large.
Diana's management is concerned about the global supply of new vessels presently on the order books, and considers the situation a danger not only to operators facing oversupply, but also to the banks financing the constructions and the shipyards that build them. Diana's president, Anastassis Margaronis, believes that some shipping analysts and ship owners have not come to grips with the crisis, and warned of a potential "wave of destruction for banks to rival the subprime crisis." Sending a chill down this Fool's spine, Margaronis then reiterated his position that "the challenge for most shipping companies will be to survive over the next two years or so, and then optimism will hopefully return to the industry."
The salient message to Fools is that the dry bulk sector at large remains fraught with significant risk. Before the outlook can improve materially, we should not be surprised to see further bankruptcies as oversupply is eliminated through brutal natural selection. I continue to view Diana and Navios Maritime
Fool contributor Christopher Barker captains yachts somewhat smaller than dry bulk carriers. He can be found blogging actively and acting Foolishly within the CAPS community under the username TMFSinchiruna. He owns shares of BHP Billiton and Diana Shipping. The Motley Fool has a seaworthy disclosure policy.