The Dry Bulk Market Is More Exciting Than You Think


The Wall Street Journal has an intriguing story today on its front page:

When stocks rose after last year’s presidential election, DryShips Inc. left the market far behind. The little-known Greek dry bulk carrier’s epic one-week rally pushed its shares up by 1,500% for no apparent reason. The rally quickly unwound after the shares were briefly suspended by Nasdaq, but the run-up appears to have made possible a flurry of financial maneuvers that may earn the company’s founder a huge windfall, according to calculations by The Wall Street Journal, while small investors suffered hundreds of millions of dollars in losses. Since they peaked, DryShips’s shares are down by 99.9%.

The Journal provides a handy timeline of events surrounding DryShips. I’ve added the line in red:

Somebody was sure excited about the prospects for bulk shipping in the Trump era. This is especially mysterious since DryShips announced that it was defaulting on its loans (“suspending principal and interest payments”) right before the huge price runup.

Oddly enough, when I went looking for the performance of other dry bulk carriers at around the same time—fully expecting to find that DryShips was indeed unique—I found another carrier with a very similar profile. Right after the election, stock in Globus Maritime skyrocketed 900 percent for a day or two:

Very strange. I guess the dry bulk market is not a place for amateurs.