Baltic index falls on weaker demand for vessels

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index fell to a near one-year low on Thursday, dragged by weaker demand across vessel segments.

The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, fell 47 points, or 7.5%, to 576 — lowest since early February

The capesize index slipped 118 points, or 36.3%, to 207.

The index registered its 30th consecutive session of losses, touching its lowest level since April 3.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes including iron ore and coal, declined $840 to $5,071.

“The market for capesize vessels has turned from bad to worse as prices for low-sulphur fuel oil remain high whilst freight rates deteriorate further,” ship broker Fearnleys said in a note on Wednesday.

Spot demand is low as only one of three major Australian miners is currently shipping to China, Fearnleys added.

The panamax index dropped 46 points, or 6.1%, to 714.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, fell $419 to $6,425.

The supramax index fell by 4 points to 546.

Source: Reuters

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