Baltic sea freight index falls for fourth straight session


The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, fell for the fourth straight session to a fresh 12-week low on Wednesday due to low demand across vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, fell by 55 points, or 2.6%, to 2,043 points, its lowest since April 12.

The capesize index slipped 84 points, or 4%, to 2,000 points, its lowest since April 22.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell $695 to $16,588.

The key rail line delivering coal to the world’s biggest coal export port in Newcastle, Australia was shut late on Tuesday due to heavy rainfall and is expected to reopen within the next 48 hours, its operator Australian Rail Track Corp said.

Meanwhile, iron ore slumped to its lowest level this year in Singapore as China faces fresh COVID-19 flare-ups in several areas including Shanghai, stoking concerns over further lockdowns in the world’s biggest steel producer.

The panamax index fell for the twelfth straight session, shedding 78 points, or 3.2%, to a near 5-month low of 2,363 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, decreased $695 to $21,270.

French consultancy Agritel said it expects conflict-hit Ukraine, one of the world’s leading wheat exporters, to harvest 21.8 million tonnes of the grain this summer compared to a record 32.2 million collected last year.

The supramax index fell 18 points to 2,247 points, heading into the tenth day of its losing streak.

Source: Reuters