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Shipbuilding and economic cycles: a non-linear econometric approach

Ferrari, C., Marchese, M. & Tei, A. (2018). Shipbuilding and economic cycles: a non-linear econometric approach. Maritime Business Review, 3(2), pp. 112-127. doi: 10.1108/mabr-01-2018-0002


Economic studies have always underlined the cyclical trends of many industries and their different relations to the macro-economic cycles. Shipping is one of those industries and it has been often characterised by peaks that have influenced both the trade patterns and industry investment structure (e.g. fleet, shipyard activity, freight rates). One of the main issues related with the cycles is the effect on overcapacity and prices for newbuilding and how the understanding of these patterns can help in preventing short-hand strategies. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate different effects of business elements on shipbuilding activity, in relation to different economic-cycle phases.

This paper proposes a non-linear econometric model to identify the relations between shipbuilding and economic cycles over the past 30 years. The research focuses on identifying the cycle characteristics and understanding the asymmetrical effect of economic- and business-related variables on its development.

The study underlines the presence of an asymmetric effect of several business variables on the shipbuilding productions, depending on the cyclical phases (i.e. market expansion or economic slowdown). Moreover, lagged effects seem to be stronger than contemporaneous variables.

The paper is a first attempt of using non-linear modelling to shipbuilding cycles, giving indications that could be included in relevant investment policies.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright © 2018, Pacific Star Group Educational Foundation.
Publisher Keywords: Shipbuilding cycles, Fleet development, Shipping market, Bulk shipping
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
V Naval Science > VM Naval architecture. Shipbuilding. Marine engineering
Departments: Bayes Business School > Finance
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