Capesize uptick propels Baltic index

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index rose on Wednesday, supported by gains in the capesize segment.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, was up 18 points, or 1.7%, at 1,081.

The capesize index rose 37 points, or 3.7%, to 1,034.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes carrying commodities such as iron ore and coal, increased by $307 to $8,573.

Iron ore prices rose, underpinned by expectations of resilient near-term steel demand in China, although gains were capped amid concerns about a slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy.

The panamax index fell 15 points, or 1.01%, to 1,466, its lowest level in nearly two weeks.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, decreased by $134 to $13,192.

“The main source of support for panamax rates came from the Pacific market, while the ECSA (European Community Shipowners’ Associations) activity remained stable and transatlantic routes performance remained subdued,” shipbroker Intermodal wrote in a weekly note.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index went up by 28 points, or 2.8%, at 1,036.

Source: Reuters

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