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Baltic index gains on higher rates for all vessels

The Baltic Exchange’s dry bulk sea freight index rose on Monday, helped by higher rates in all vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, rose 87 points to 2,235 points, its highest since Feb. 23.

The capesize index gained 114 points to 1,749 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, increased $948 to $14,508.

Benchmark iron ore futures in China rose as soaring oil prices, due to the Ukraine crisis, and an annual economic forecast by the world’s second-largest economy lifted sentiment.

The panamax index was up 116 points at 2,901 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, increased $1,052 to $26,113.

The supramax index rose 54 points to 2,640 points.

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s state-run railway operator is ready to organise agricultural exports by rail as a matter of urgency, it said on Sunday, after closure of the country’s Black Sea ports because of the military invasion by Russia.

The major global agricultural producer and exporter has historically exported by ship.

“All in all, we believe that despite possibilities of increasing tonne miles demand for certain commodities, the war in Ukraine is a net negative for the bulk market driven by both a lack of commodity supply and reduced demand due to price increases,” BIMCO’s chief shipping analyst Niels Rasmussen said in a note.

“Further steps to sanction some or all of Russia’s exports could cause further disruption although we believe that China may continue to be a taker for Russian commodities,” Rasmussen added.

Source: Reuters

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