The Baltic Exchange’s dry bulk sea freight index dropped for a sixth straight session to its lowest in seven weeks on Thursday, pressured by weaker demand across all vessel segments.
The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize vessels, fell by 178 points, or 4.7%, to 3,630, its lowest since Sept. 8.
The capesize index fell 286 points, or 5.9%, to 4,542, its lowest in over two-and-a-half months.
Average daily earnings for capesizes, which transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell $2,371 to $37,669.
Chinese coking coal futures hit their trading limit down at open on Thursday for a second straight session and plumbed a near two-month low, as Beijing beefed up measures to cool surging coal prices.
There has been a lot of panic in the capesize segment and despite some signs of support it still remains “very nervous”, ship broker Fearnleys said in a weekly note on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, “this week the Panamax market has not shown any clear direction, but the underlying sentiment is negative,” the note added.
The panamax index fell 118 points, or 2.9%, to 3,965, touching its lowest in over two weeks.
Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which ferry 60,000-70,000 tonne coal or grain cargoes, decreased by $1,064 to $35,682.
The supramax index fell 154 points to 3,190, a one-and-a-half month low.