Baltic index down as capesize vessel rates fall

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index fell for a second straight session on Monday, weighed down by a dip in capesize vessel rates.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels carrying dry bulk commodities, fell 14 points to 1,223.

The capesize index fell 60 points, or 3.8%, to 1,538, its lowest in nearly four weeks.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes carrying commodities such as iron ore and coal, fell $503 to $12,752.

The panamax index slipped 1 point to 1,541, snapping its 18-day winning streak.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, rose by $4 to $13,872.

The Panama Canal Authority has reduced maximum ship weights and daily ship crossings in a bid to conserve water, with experts warning such restrictions could be the new normal as rainfall deficits in the world’s fifth wettest country have brought climate risks to the fore.

Dalian and Singapore iron ore futures extended gains on traders’ relief that steel mills in China’s major steelmaking province were yet to implement production cuts, and on the latest monetary stimulus rollout by the government.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index rose 21 points, or 2.4% to 900.

Source: Reuters

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