The effects of the bankruptcy filing by South Korean shipper Hanjin have rippled through the country's supply chain, further dinging its economy.
(ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/Getty Images)
Buffeted by overcapacity in the global shipping market, South Korean giant Hanjin Shipping Co. appears to be sailing toward oblivion. In the past week, creditors pulled the plug after 1 trillion won ($900 million) in support failed to keep the company afloat, forcing Hanjin to file for bankruptcy protection. Seoul Central District Court, which will decide the eventual fate of the company, has set a Nov. 25 deadline for it to develop another restructuring plan, but many experts think liquidation will be the most likely outcome. In the short term, the company's demise has temporarily raised some shipping rates, which have remained persistently low industrywide thanks to the sluggish global economy. It likely will also cause some supply disruptions during the peak season for orders of holiday goods.
But even if the company, the eighth largest by capacity in the world, finds an unlikely way out of its predicament, the underlying...