Baltic index inches up on capesize gains

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, edged higher on Tuesday as the capesize vessel segment gained.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, climbed 5 points, or 0.28%, to 1,813.

The capesize index gained 23 points, or 0.82%, to 2,839, its highest level since May 14.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-ton cargoes of iron ore and coal, among others, increased $188 to $23,545.

Iron ore futures plunged to their lowest level in nearly seven weeks, pressured by weakening demand in top consumer China in the near and long term, as well as persistent high portside inventories.

The panamax index fell 2 points, or about 0.12%, to 1,679.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry about 60,000-70,000 tons of coal or grain cargo, dipped $18 to $15,112.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index eased for the fifteenth consecutive session by 7 points, or 0.55%, to 1,265, marking its lowest level since April 11.

Source: Reuters