Baltic index touches over 1-month low on weak demand across vessels


The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index extended losses to hit a more than one-month low on Wednesday, pressured by lower rates across all vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, lost 104 points, or 4.1%, to 2,410 points.

The capesize index fell 211 points, or about 7.9%, to 2,457 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were down $1,748 at $20,380.

A drop-off in grain shipments led by closures of Ukrainian ports and China’s strict zero-COVID policy have “naturally caused a reduction in both activity and demand”, BIMCO’s chief shipping analyst, Niels Rasmussen, said in a note.

China accounts for around 35% of global cargo demand, he added.

The panamax index dropped 68 points, or 2.4%, to 2,747 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, decreased by $616 to $24,723.

Iron ore futures in Asia fell with the key Dalian contract extending losses to a second session, as reduced profitability at Chinese steel mills following a recent rally in prices of steelmaking ingredients weighed on sentiment.

The supramax index lost 47 points to 2,585 points.

Source: Reuters