The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying industrial commodities, ended flat on Monday, primarily due to higher rates for capesize vessels and ending a run of 15 consecutive losing sessions.
The overall index, which gauges the cost of shipping dry bulk including iron ore, cement, grain, coal and fertiliser, ended unchanged at 354 points, its lowest level in records that date back to January 1985.
The index, which has fallen 124 points or 26 percent this year, fell on Friday to a record low for the 14th straight session and falling for the 15th straight session overall.
The dry bulk sector has taken a beating from the slowdown in Chinese business at a time when the sector is struggling with huge overcapacity.
The capesize index gained 25 points, or 10.92 percent, to 254 points.
Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, rose $200 to $3,184.
The panamax index shed nine points to record a new all-time low of 325 points.
Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, fell $72 to $2,600.
(Reporting by Vijaykumar Vedala in Bengaluru)