Baltic index gains on strong capesize demand

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Wednesday on the back of higher rates for capesize vessels.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, gained 38 points, or 1.9%, to 1,964.

The capesize index climbed 155 points, or 5.2%, to 3,145, marking its highest level since May 10.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-ton cargoes, such as iron ore and coal, were up $1,288 at $26,082.

Iron ore futures prices rose for a second straight session, aided by a wave of buying in China’s spot market and bets that the world’s second-largest economy will unveil more stimulus to spur its struggling property market.

The panamax index fell 52 points, or about 3%, to 1,683, its lowest level since April 11.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry about 60,000-70,000 tons of coal or grain cargo, declined $465 to $15,149.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index was steady at 1,412.

Source: Reuters