The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, edged higher on Monday buoyed by a pick up in demand for capesize vessels.
The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, rose 1 point, or 0.1%, to 1,056, its highest level since May 30.
The capesize index added 18 points, or 1.2%, to 1,532.
Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes carrying commodities such as iron ore and coal, increased $142 to $12,702.
“Demand for [capesize vessels] is being supported by coal chartering into India and Vietnam,” said Alexis Ellender, dry bulk analyst at Kpler, adding that higher electricity usage in the summer months is contributing to higher demand for coal.
The panamax index, however, fell 2 points, or 0.2% at 1,144.
Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, also fell $21 to $10,295.
Among smaller vessels, the supramax index lost 10 points at 726, touching an almost 4-month low.
“We’re seeing slower grain chartering out of Ukraine in the Black Sea because only two ports are operating since the renewal of the grain export agreements. At the same time, we’ve passed sort of peak for Brazilian soybean export chartering,” said Ellender, referring to the dip in the supramax segment.