Declines in larger vessels drag down Baltic index

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index fell for a second straight session on Wednesday, pressured by losses in the larger capesize and panamax vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, lost 108 points, or 4.5%, to 2,284 points.

The capesize index was down by 300 points, or 7.5%, at 3,690, its lowest level since Feb. 28.

Average daily earnings for capesize vessels, which typically transports 150,000-ton cargoes such as iron ore and coal, decreased by $2,492 to $30,601.

The capesize index was the sole segment facing a downturn, as a slowdown in Pacific engagements exerted downward pressure on average earnings,” Intermodal Research Analyst Chara Georgousi said in a weekly note on Tuesday.

Prices of Dalian iron ore futures rose, supported by growing expectations of a wave of production resumption among steelmakers in top consumer China.

The panamax index snapped a 16-session winning streak, shedding 55 points or 2.4%, to 2,251 points.

Average daily earnings for panamax vessels, which usually carries about 60,000-70,000 tons of coal or grain cargo, rose $497 at $20,260.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index, rose by 19 points, or 1.4%, to 1,370 points, rising for a fifth straight session.

Source: Reuters