Baltic index scales over 3-1/2-month high

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The Baltic Exchange’s main dry bulk sea freight index rose for the seventh straight session on Thursday as demand strengthened across vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, rose 50 points, or 3.9%, to 1,340, hitting its highest level since May 23.

The capesize index, added 96 points, or 6.8%, to 1,512, registering an over three-week peak.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes carrying commodities such as iron ore and coal, increased $794 to $12,537.

Iron ore futures increased for a fourth consecutive session, aided by low inventories and pre-holiday restocking, although concerns about lingering steel market weakness in the peak construction season limited gains.

The panamax index gained 19 points, or 1.2%, to 1,642, its highest level in over 4 months.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, rose $171 to $14,781.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index added 40 points or 3.5% to 1,196 points.

Source: Reuters

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