May 8 - In its first quarter results, TBS International swung to loss, hurt by a drop in freight rates, sending its shares down as much as 18 percent.

For the first quarter, the company posted a loss of USD21.2 million, compared with a profit of USD45.4 million, one year ago.

Revenues fell about 46 percent to USD71.2 million. Quarterly time charter revenue fell 81 percent to USD6.2 million, while average daily voyage time charter equivalent fell 59 percent to USD11,685 per day.

Late last year, TBS took delivery of Zia Belle, expanding its fleet to 47 vessels. It was TBS's first tweendecker with heavy lift gear and helps the company to meet the shipping needs of clients engaged in energy, mining, steel, construction, and infrastructure development projects.