NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Oil tanker shares were soaring as the political turmoil in Egypt triggered speculation that the Suez Canal might be shut down.
If that happens, ships will need to circumnavigate Africa. The longer voyages would lift worldwide oil-tanker rates. The last time the canal was shut down -- during the 1973 Arab-Israeli War -- shipping rates went through the roof.
Shares of General Maritime (GMR), the most beaten down of tanker names, gained the most ground Friday, adding 10% to $3.20 on heavy volume. Genmar, which had levered up in the summer to make a big ship acquisition, had struggled with that debt in recent months.
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