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Baltic index extends gains on firm larger vessels demand

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, extended gains on Tuesday supported by higher rates for larger vessel segments, especially capesizes.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, gained 61 points, or about 4.3%, to 1,473 – its biggest daily percentage rise in three weeks.

Brokerage Jefferies said the recent upswing in dry bulk rates looks to be more of a seasonal bounce than pronounced upturn, and flagged concerns over softer steel demand backdrop.

The capesize index rose 144 points, or about 8.4%, to 1,867.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes carrying commodities such as iron ore and coal, increased $1,193 to $15,483.

The panamax index gained 60 points, or about 3.6%, to its highest since March 17 at 1,724.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, increased $545 to $15,517.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index lost 11 points to 1,176.

Source: Reuters

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