NEW YORK (TheStreet) --Voters in this week's dry-bulk shipping poll apparently believe that DryShips' (DRYS) - Get Report strategy of locking nearly all its fleet (87% for the rest of the year) into long-term charter contracts will benefit the company in the coming months.

As our survey question posited, shippers have chartered their fleets to varying degrees as they attempt to forecast the direction of the market.

Some 2,310 poll takers, or 47% of the total, have faith in DryShips' chieftain George Economou, widely regarded in the industry as both a brilliant market-timer as well as something of a gambler.

Market sentiment on Economou's company may also be moving in a

bullish direction

. The company's stock rose about 5% Friday, capping a strong week, although is has shed 1.6% in weekend after-market trading since then.

Among the other shippers in our poll,

Genco Shipping & Trading

(GNK) - Get Report

, with about 67% of its fleet chartered for 2009, a relatively low percentage industrywide, came in last in our poll, with just 6.6% of the total.

Voters were sort of "meh" on the other names on the list.

Diana Shipping

(DSX) - Get Report

received almost 20%,

Excel Maritime

(EXM)

15% and

Navios Maritime Holdings

(NM) - Get Report

just shy of 12%.

Navios is by far the most conservative among this group, with 99% of its fleet locked in for the rest of 2009 -- and apparently that's too cautious for most survey takers.

-- Written by Scott Eden in New York

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Scott Eden has covered business -- both large and small -- for more than a decade. Prior to joining TheStreet.com, he worked as a features reporter for Dealmaker and Trader Monthly magazines. Before that, he wrote for the Chicago Reader, that city's weekly paper. Early in his career, he was a staff reporter at the Dow Jones News Service. His reporting has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Men's Journal, the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, and the Believer magazine, among other publications. He's also the author of Touchdown Jesus (Simon & Schuster, 2005), a nonfiction book about Notre Dame football fans and the business and politics of big-time college sports. He has degrees from Notre Dame and Washington University in St. Louis.