Commercial Trade Transactions

ASBA Online Certificate Course

Commercial Trade Transactions is a course to assist the Maritime Profession in the understanding of the fundamentals of their business, specifically the risks associated with international trade. This course will also present a diverse range of “real life” trade transaction problems for discussion and review.


“This course has been incredibly informative. Funnily enough (or not so), I have had a few scenarios involving topics discussed arise during some of the day to day business our company conducts. General average scenario just last night!”
Oliver Keane – Waterfront Chartering 

“This course has been of great assistance in my dealings with letters of credit as well as other commercial documents.”
William Davis – T. Parker Host

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  • Fundamentals of Commercial Trade Transactions – risk of loss, INCOTERMS, seller and buyer responsibilities, and discussion of pro forma sales agreements, payment provisions, and special risks associated with international trade, among others.
  • Letter of Credit Fundamentals- parties to the credit, advising versus confirming banks, irrevocable versus revocable credits, payment letters of credit, standby letters of credit, strict compliance rule, basic documentation required.
  • Letters of Credit (Advanced) – application of the UCP to bills of lading, insurance certificates, inspection certificates, commercial invoices, and other documents, dealing with stale documents, dealing with discrepant documents, payment under reserve, back to back and transfer of credits, case studies.
  • Transportation Fundamentals – bills of lading and charter parties, the role of transport intermediaries, freight forwarders, NVOCC’s, multimodal issues, freight, among others.
  • Risk Management – principles of cargo insurance, open policies, terms of average, covered risks, franchises and deductibles, general average overview, credit insurance, foreign corrupt practices, ethical considerations, among others.
  • Commercial Transactions/Practical Problems – students will be presented with a diverse range of “real life” trade transaction problems for discussion. Students will use the course materials as a platform for discussing profitable and ethical solutions to the problems presented.


5 - 6 hours for each lesson
Review of lecture (1-2 Hours)
Additional reading assignments (1-2 Hours)
Posting, answering and reviewing questions to/from the professor (1-2 Hours)


Upon registration students will be sent details for registration into online course via THINKIFIC. Learning will be asynchronous. Each student will select his/her own time for attending the biweekly virtual class (by reading each week’s classroom lecture). Each student must also read any additional assignments for that lesson. Students may be required to answer questions for each lesson and check once the answers have been posted to the site. The professor is available for student questions in each lesson which students will post via THINKIFIC. Questions and their answers are viewable by all students. ASBA will award a certificate upon successful completion of all coursework and the Final Exam.


Jeffrey A. Weiss 

A Professor at the State University of New York, Maritime College and currently teaches courses in the business of shipping, charter parties, maritime law, marine insurance, and international commercial transactions, among others. He has taught similar courses at the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point and the Webb Institute of Naval Architecture. Professor Weiss has taught courses offered by A.S.B.A. live and via the internet for many years.

Professor Weiss is also an attorney and is admitted to practice law in the State of New York and the United States District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York.  Many years ago, Professor Weiss served onboard various American merchant ships as a deck officer. He has also worked shoreside in vessel operations.

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