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Shipping lines plunge into a war of attrition

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The Majestic Maersk, one of the world's largest containerships, is moored at Yangshan Deep Water Port in Shanghai's free trade zone on Sept. 24.   © Reuters

Ebbing trade growth and low freight rates are pushing Asian shipping lines into a war of attrition. To survive, the companies are scurrying to seal merger deals or strike up loose alliances. But the war has already claimed a major casualty -- South Korea's Hanjin Shipping -- and it may be only a matter of time until another player succumbs.

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