Shares of Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. plunged 19% in trade today, the most in 3 months, as investors worried that the company’s debt-to-equity exchange plan would dilute their shareholding.
Hyundai Merchant’s stock declined to KRW 15,000 in trade in Seoul, today.Rival firm Hanjin Shipping‘s shares also dropped as much as 9.2%, as investors feared a similar outcome, as the company is in negotiations with lenders about a possible swap, similar to Hyundai’s.
Hyundai Merchant will issue 236m new shares to its creditor banks, bondholders and shipowners in the debt-for-equity swap as part of its restructuring plan.
The plan follows South Korea’s Finance Minister Yoo Il Ho’s call for restructuring in the shipping industry as weak demand and dwindling cash levels hurt the companies.
The nation also prepares to start a KRW 11tn fund aimed at restructuring its ailing shipbuilding industry.