Hyundai Merchant Marine continues operating at loss

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Hyundai Merchant Marine continues operating at loss

Hyundai Merchant Marine, Korea’s largest shipping company, continued to suffer an operating loss in the third quarter due to increased fuel costs and still lower freight rates, but the company said Friday that it successfully narrowed the loss from a year earlier on cost-saving efforts.

Operating loss totaled 29.5 billion won ($26.4 million) between July and September, compared with 230 billion won the previous year.

The third-quarter bottom line marks the 10th quarterly operating loss since the second quarter of 2015.

Sales, however, jumped 20 percent year on year to 1.29 trillion won.

Hyundai Merchant Marine said its fuel costs surged 34.2 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier, but its cost-saving efforts helped narrow the operating loss.

Sales from its container business soared 28.2 percent from last year, leading to an overall rise in third-quarter revenue. It handled over a million twenty-foot equivalent units of cargo in the third quarter, up 41 percent from a year earlier.

Hyundai Merchant Marine expects business conditions, including shipping rates, to start improving this quarter. The company’s chief executive, Yoo Chang-keun, has said earlier that the company will strive to achieve an operating income to sales rate of 5 percent rate within five years.

He remains hopeful that the company will achieve a turnaround during the second half of next year, given its improving financial status and business conditions.

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