Baltic Index Up On Higher Capesize Rates

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

May 9, 2017

© norinut / Adobe Stock

© norinut / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, crawled up for the second straight session on higher rates for capesize vessels.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, was up six points, or 0.6 percent, at 1,007 points.

The capesize index rose 64 points, or 4.07 percent, to 1,635 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, rose $364 to $12,446.

"Firmer steel pricing in China in addition to weaker coal and iron ore pricing is beginning to open up steel margins which touched multi-year lows just a few weeks ago," Clarksons Platou Securities analysts said in a note. "As such, we anticipate the incentive towards marginal steel production to firm (capesize) tonnage demand in the coming weeks."

The panamax index was down two points, or 0.2 percent, at 1,007 points. The index slid for the 14th straight session and touched its lowest level since Feb. 28.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, slipped $12 to $8,100, the weakest since end-February.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index shed 5 points to 794 points, while the handysize index fell five points to 512 points.
(Reporting by Vijaykumar Vedala in Bengaluru)
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