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Baltic index nears 3-month peak on higher demand across vessels

The Baltic Exchange’s dry bulk sea freight index jumped to its highest in nearly three months on Thursday, as rates rose across vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, rose 146 points to 2,704 points, its highest since Dec. 14.

The capesize index gained 331 points, or 14.5%, to 2,613 points, its highest since Dec. 21.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, increased $2,740 to $21,668.

“The North Atlantic has been suffering as the Russian invasion of Ukraine has taken out loading areas either directly caused by war or by self-sanctions,” Fearnleys said in a weekly note on Wednesday.

“Further linked to the war we see much more coal heading towards Europe from destinations which is atypical – replacing Russian coal.”

The panamax index was up 39 points at 3,233 points, its highest since Dec. 7.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, increased $353 to $29,097.

Tunisia’s state grains agency has issued another international tender to buy about 125,000 tonnes of soft wheat and 100,000 tonnes of animal feed barley as prices hover around 14-year highs.

The supramax index rose 78 points, its highest in more than four months, to 2,923 points.

Source: Reuters

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