Baltic index hits two-week low on weaker vessel rates

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, fell to a two-week low on Monday as demand in all vessel segments weakened.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, fell 26 points, or 1.3%, to 1,940, its lowest level since June 25.

The capesize index dropped 63 points, or 1.9%, to 3,276, its lowest level since June 26.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels , which typically transport 150,000-ton cargoes, such as iron ore and coal, were down $521 at $27,171.

Iron ore futures slid as weak demand and high inventories in China weighed on the key steelmaking ingredient.

The panamax index dropped for the 15th consecutive session as it edged lower 15 points, or about 0.9%, to 1,531, to mark its lowest level since February 12.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry about 60,000-70,000 tons of coal or grain cargo, declined $135 to $13,779.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index dropped 1 point, or 0.1% to 1,334.

Source: Reuters