Baltic index falls as capesize losses offset panamax gains

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, fell on Thursday, as gains in the panamax segment were countered by a decline in capesize rates.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, fell 11 points, or 1.8%, to 592.

The capesize index lost 22 points, or 4.6%, to mark its worst day in a week at 452.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, decreased $175 to $3,752.

The capesize market is extremely quiet as activity in both Atlantic and Pacific basins has slowed down dramatically, according to shipbroker Fearnleys’ weekly note.

“It’s hard to see rates going further south, but with more available tonnage building up we don’t see a massive uptick overnight.”

The panamax index (.BPNI) climbed 5 points, or 0.6%, to 861, snapping its seven-session losing streak.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, increased $41 to $7,745.

The supramax index fell 15 points to 636.

Source: Reuters

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