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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Panamax Rates News

Panamax Rates Hold Firm

Asia's Panamax rates for dry bulk cargo are expected to remain firm this week on strong vessel demand for grain and mineral exports and support from a rebound in Capesize, traders said. "Panamax freight rates are holding firm this week," said a shipping trader in Seoul. Active grain and oilseed exports from South America were providing support to the Panamax market, along with steady exports of coking coal from China, Indonesia and Australia, he said. The Panamax rates were also supported by a rebound in Capesize rates since late last week, he added. Spot freight rates for U.S. Gulf/Japan for Panamax cargoes were unchanged at about $23.25-$23.50 per ton from last week, a shipping broker said.

Capesize Rates Ease

Easier conditions were seen for Capesizes in the Atlantic sector of the dry cargo freight market, brokers said last week. Some brokers believed that the gap between Capesize and Panamax rates could not be sustained and that some Capesize cargoes would be split into Panamax sizes. However, it was pointed out that Capesize contracts did not always permit this. Panamax rates were generally unchanged, while Handysize levels remained firm in the East and were said to be stronger from the east coast of South America. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) was down two points at 1,684, the Baltic Panamax Index fell seven points to 1,513, the Baltic Capesize Index was unchanged at 2,369 and the Baltic Handy Index gained two to 1,181.

Asian Panamax Rates Up Slightly

Asian Panamax freight rates for dry bulk cargo edged up slightly this week in slow trade due to New Year holidays, Reuters reported. But the outlook for the Panamax sector remained healthy as activity would pick up momentum after the holiday period and the arrival of new ships was unlikely to affect Panamax rates before April, brokers said. The freight rates for the heavy grain Panamax benchmark route, U.S. Gulf to Japan, were quoted higher at $22.493 a ton compared with $22.208 two weeks earlier, brokers said. Panamax rates for the U.S. Pacific route were indicated at $16.543 per ton, up from $16.325 two weeks ago. Brokers said reported fixtures had been slightly quieter as Christmas and New Year holidays kept chartering businesses slow.

Panamax Rates Likely To Ease

Asian Panamax rates for dry bulk cargo are likely to ease further this week on soft demand for mineral and grain shipment, with many spot vessels available for hire in the market. "There have been few fresh spot inquiries by charterers," said a shipping broker. Panamax rates for freights from the U.S. Gulf to Japan were indicated at $21.50-$22.00 a ton for March shipment, against $23.00 from a week ago, he said. The broker also put indication rates for April shipment around $22.50-$23.00 on hopes of a rise in vessel demand, as the South American grain export season starts in the same month. But no fixtures have been reported. In the market, one Japanese trading house was said to have fixed a Panamax vessel last week at $21.25 a ton to carry about 54,000 tons of heavy grain from the U.S.

Diana Shipping Enters into TC Contract with Uniper

Photo: Diana Shipping Inc.

Diana Shipping has announced that, through a separate wholly-owned subsidiary, it has entered into a time charter contract with Uniper Global Commodities SE, Düsseldorf, for one of its Post-Panamax dry bulk vessels, the m/v Phaidra. The gross charter rate is US$12,700 per day, minus a 5% commission paid to third parties, for a period of minimum 12 months to maximum 15 months. The charter commenced on January 13, 2018. The m/v Phaidra was previously chartered to Jera Trading Singapore Pte. Ltd.

Asian Panamax Rates Heading Up?

Asian Panamax rates for dry bulk cargo are likely to inch up later this week on brisk demand for grain shipment after easing slightly in thin trade last week on the New Year holidays, Reuters reported. "The freight market is expected to gain momentum with the regional business returning to normal after the New Year holiday, and on expectation of active grain chartering before the Chinese New Year holiday starts," said a shipping broker in Seoul. The Lunar New Year falls on January 24. Offices in the Chinese community are likely to remain shut until as late as January 28 and the South Korean market will be closed from January 23 to 25. Panamax rates for the U.S.

Capesize Rates Firm

Capesize rates firmed again worldwide but brokers said charterers were increasingly conducting business under the counter. Panamax rates were also firmer east of Suez with both Chinese and Japanese charterers active in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific, while Atlantic handysize conditions remained in the doldrums, they added. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) rose 10 points to 1,491, the Baltic panamax Index gained one point to 1,419, The Baltic Capesize Index jumped up 27 points to 2,055 and the Baltic Handy Index firmed three points to 1,008.

Dry Freight Markets Steady

Conditions on the dry cargo freight market were generally steadier for Capesizes on Wednesday, with the Baltic Cape Index posted at an unchanged 2,171, brokers said. Atlantic Panamax rates rose further and brokers said conditions were also slowly improving for owners in the East for later May positions. The South African sector remained firm. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) gained two points to 1,611 and the Baltic Panamax Index rose 10 points to 1,522, while the Baltic Handysize Index fell three points to 1,150.

Panamax Rates Under Pressure

Freight rates in the Atlantic Panamax market remained under pressure and were expected to move even lower in the near term, brokers said on Monday. While Atlantic rates continued to slide, Pacific business was holding up for the time being but was expected to tail off in due course, brokers said. Fresh cargoes had emerged in the Pacific for Panamaxes, but Japanese and Chinese owners had also started to place their tonnage on the open market. Since the owners in question usually confined their ships to private business, the emergence of their vessels for open charter did not bode well for the Pacific Panamax market. The Baltic Panamax Index (BPI) lost just nine points on Monday to 1,198, but brokers believed Panamax rates had further to fall.

Pacific Panamax Rates Drop

Pacific Panamax freight rates have dropped sharply in line with weaker Asian Panamaxes, brokers said. Average rates for Pacific round voyages fell to $9,600 daily, down $169 from Monday, and down $217 from last week. Brokers said that the result will make Panamax owners reluctant to trade fronthaul business without negotiating premium rates. The declining rates could deter owners from moving ships into the Pacific, but brokers said that if Panamax owners re-entered the Atlantic, this could support Pacific rates. For example, the Panamax for the 1986-built 61,013 dwt Andromeda was for Passero delivery in May for a trip via Brazil. If re-delivery took place in the Atlantic the freight rate would be $10…

Handy Rally Ends Before It Gets Started

A brief pre-millennium recovery in the long-depressed Handy size bulk shipping markets appears to have been snuffed out before it got going, brokers said. A rush of available tonnage seeking charters ahead of the holiday period was to blame, brokers said. Collapsing Panamax rates, after their recent recovery based on pre-Christmas fixing, were also depressing the Handy sector. "For a couple of days this week things looked perkier. Rates moved up, but now they are in reverse," one Handy broker said. The J E Hyde Handy index dropped by nine points on Nov. 18, and brokers said heavy falls were on the way. Ships were being brought in early, particularly on the Continent, to find fixtures that would put them at sea with a cargo over the December 20-January 10 period, brokers said.

Stiff Rate Increases Seen For Atlantic Capers

Some stiff rate increases for Atlantic capers were seen for business to China and for trans-Atlantic coal, brokers said last Wednesday. Panamax rates were still drifting from the U.S. Gulf due to lack of orders, but levels in the Far East for these vessels remained firmer, they added. Conditions for handy size vessels and to a lesser extent smaller geared tonnage, were generally better in the Atlantic. The Baltic Freight Index (BFI) rose six points to 1,223, the Baltic Panamax Index gained five points to 1,186, the Baltic Handy Index firmed seven points to 930, and the Baltic Capesize Index was also up seven points to 1,412. In the grain sector…

Panamax Rates Hold Steady

Freight rates in the Atlantic Panamax sector held steady on Wednesday amid signs that recent rises may be stalling, brokers said. "The Atlantic is holding up well, but the question is not whether the Panamax market will rally further, but when the Atlantic will come off," one said. Until then, Atlantic and Pacific Panamax rates were expected to remain steady. Signs that the market was reaching its pinnacle were heralded by the Baltic Panamax Index (BPI) on Monday, when rises in both the Atlantic and Pacific were noticeably smaller. The trend persisted on Tuesday, and by Wednesday the BPI rose just two points to 1,436. Freight rates remained high enough, however, to encourage charterers to continue with timecharter deals.

Baltic Sea Freight Index down on Weak Capesize Rates

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, dropped for a 14th straight session on Friday, driven mainly by falling capesize rates. The overall index, which factors in the average daily earnings of capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize dry bulk transport vessels, fell 27 points, or 2.62 percent, to 1,002. The Baltic's capesize index fell 76 points, or 4.08 percent, to 1,789 points. Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were down $721 $11,042. Capesize rates have fallen about 32 percent this week. The panamax index fell 5 points, or 0.64 percent, to 782 points.

Capesize Rates Pull Baltic Index to 4-month Low

© NS Photography / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, hit a more than four-month low on Tuesday, as capesize rates dropped to their lowest since August last year. The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, lost 43 points, or 3.4 percent, to 1,221 points, the lowest since Sept. The capesize index fell 221 points, or 9.91 percent, to 2,010 points, its lowest level since Aug. 10 last year.

Increased Panamax Rates Boost Market Sentiment

Higher panamax freight rates have boosted sentiment in the market amid hopes for further rates increases during the week, shipbrokers said on Monday. They gave as prime example the latest U.S. Gulf to Japan fixture at a rate of $23.25 per ton of heavy grain for mid-July loading dates, this compared with the present Baltic Panamax Index showing an average $22.86 per ton. Firmer fixtures had been also reported for both the Pacific and the Atlantic, brokers said. An undisclosed panamax had been chartered to load 55,000 tons of heavy grains from the River Plate and deliver it to China at a rate of $25.75 per ton, brokers said. Shipbrokers also mentioned the timecharter of the 1999-built 75…

Oversupply, Limited Cargoes Contribute To Weakening Panamax Rates

Panamax rates continued to weaken due to oversupply and limited cargoes on Monday, but owners were hopeful that the market was finding a floor, brokers said. The physical market remained in decline, but the forward freight agreement market was holding steady. Buying interest on the Biffex futures market on Friday had suggested a potential bounce this week, brokers said. Panamaxes struggled to find employment and charterers were still using their advantage to push rates lower. However, in some cases owners were having to think hard about whether it was worth taking up the returns being offered, or stay unemployed. Clarkson Research Studies reported average panamax earnings down 14 percent to $5,630 daily last week, compared with an average to date for 2001 of $9,560 daily.

Atlantic Panamax Rates Firm Up in Far East

Atlantic panamax freight rates are softer in contrast to returns for panamaxes trading the Far East where rates are firmer, shipbrokers said on Tuesday. Atlantic freight rates, however, could stabilize in the days ahead, they added, suggesting that the Pacific panamax rate rise could be reaching a peak. The reason behind the Atlantic stabilization theory is that ice problems in the Mississippi may not be as bad as originally thought. Shipbrokers said that suppliers are now confident that they will be able to get cargoes down to the US Gulf on schedule. Moreover, grain purchasing activity has picked up considerably over the past few days. Shipbrokers report that China has purchased ten panamax grain cargoes recently.

Asian Panamax Rates Edge Higher

Asian Panamax freight rates for dry bulk cargo in the Pacific market edged higher this week on the back of pre-Lunar New Year holiday grain purchases and persistent coal shipments, shipping agents said. But brokers said they expected freight rates to show signs of weakness next week as several Asian countries would be on holiday. "Chartering activity will slow down next week as many countries in the Asian region close for the Chinese New Year," said one domestic broker. The Chinese New Year falls on January 24 this year. Offices in the Chinese community are likely to remain closed for the whole week ending on January 28. Spot freight rates for Panamax-class cargoes for the U.S. Pacific route were quoted at $17.213 per ton, up from $16.881 one week earlier. Panamax rates for the U.S.

Baltic Sea Freight Index Down

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, fell for a ninth straight session on Friday on lower vessel activity. The overall index, which factors in the average daily earnings of capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize dry bulk transport vessels, fell 30 points, or 2.43 percent, to 1,205. The Baltic's capesize index fell 37 points, or 1.58 percent, to 2,306 points. Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were down $533 to $16,451. Capesize rates fell about 16 percent this week. The panamax index fell 14 points, or 1.67 percent, to 822 points.

Capesize, Panamax Bulkers Carry Baltic Index

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Lidian Neeleman)

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, climbed for the fourth straight session on Monday on improving capesize and panamax rates. The overall index — which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels — was up 21 points, or 2.47 percent, at 870 points. The capesize index gained 43 points, or 2.99 percent, to 1,481 points. "The capesize dry bulk segment is building off of last week's momentum on the back of a meaningful uptick of activity in the Atlantic market…

Panamax Rates Slip Slightly

Panamax freight rate ideas for the immediate future have slipped back slightly, shipbrokers said. Overall, Panamax freight rates in the Atlantic are seen as softer, while the Pacific market is deemed relatively steady. However, shipbrokers are eager to see some sign this week that the Panamax market will stabilize. The start of the week saw a three to five month period charter fixed at $11,000 daily for the 1990 built 68,789 dwt Antwerpia, but the latest booking, for the 1989 built 69,406 dwt Anangel Progress, shows a slightly lower negotiated level. The Anangel Progress is scheduled for delivery Continent just before mid-March and is chartered for a three to five month trading contract at $10,900 daily, said shipbrokers.

Oversupply Leads Pacific Panamax Rates Tumble

Panamax owners in the Atlantic have fought off charterers' attempts to push freight rates lower, but panamaxes in the Pacific are weaker due to oversupply, brokers said on Wednesday. "The Atlantic looks to have reached a level, but the Pacific has some way to go yet," one said. The Baltic Panamax Index has eased this week, standing 13 points lower at 922 on Wednesday. Brokers said the increase in the panamax fleet this year was behind the decline in freight rates. The fleet has added around 40 panamaxes and brokers expect a similar amount to be delivered during the second half of 2001. Brokers said the trend was reflected in the fixture of the 1994-built 70…

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