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Baltic index dips on slow capesize vessel activity

The Baltic Exchange’s dry bulk sea freight index fell to a one-week low on Thursday, as the larger capesize vessel index posted losses for a fifth straight session due to lower volumes.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, slid 10 points, or 0.5%, to 1,886, the lowest level since Feb. 9.

The capesize index fell 29 points, or nearly 2%, to 1,447, its lowest level in more than a week.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell by $239 to $12,000.

The capesize index has seen average earnings flatten as routes with major volumes, such as west Australia/China and Brazil/Feast, failed to meet trade-volume expectations, while Brazilian miners battle weather-related production issues and shipping delays, said shipbroker Fearnleys in a weekly report.

The panamax index eased 10 points, or 0.4%, to 2,365.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which ferry 60,000-70,000 tonne coal or grain cargoes, dropped $86 to $21,288.

The supramax index was up 6 points at 2,326.

As tensions escalate between Russia and Ukraine, the market reacted with intense volatility, with strong demand for coal shipments on the Indonesia-India routes, Fearnleys said, referring to the supramax segment.

Source: Reuters

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