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Nordic American buys tanker for $56.7 million

Nordic American Tanker Shipping Ltd. said Monday it bought a double-hull tanker for $56.7 million and said the deal would improve the quarterly dividend and earnings per share.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Nordic American Tanker Shipping Ltd. said Monday it bought a double-hull tanker for $56.7 million and said the deal would improve the quarterly dividend and earnings per share.

Nordic said its fourth-quarter dividend would be about 85 cents per share, up from 50 cents per share a year earlier. The company said dividends would fluctuate with spot Suezmax tanker market rates.

The company estimated its fourth-quarter average charter rate including offhire days was about $40,000 per day per vessel. It had 35 days offhire because of unscheduled repairs. Spot rate contracts for 2009 are "well above" the fourth-quarter 2008 levels, it said.

Nordic did not identify the seller of the Suezmax tanker that it expects to be delivered by March 15. It said the ship was built in 1999 and would be used in the spot market.

The purchase will increase the Bermuda-based company's fleet to 15 double-hull vessels, including two new ships that Nordic had already said it would acquire this year and next year.

The company said it would finance the latest purchase from its own resources. It said it has no net debt and an unused credit line of $500 million.

Nordic shares rose $1.61, or 4.7 percent, to $36 in afternoon trading.