Weak capesize rates weigh on Baltic index

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The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index slipped on Wednesday, as losses in the capesize segment countered strength in the panamax and supramax segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, was down 32 points, or 1.5%, at 2,113 points.

The capesize index fell for the second straight session, losing 180 points, or 6.2%, at 2,719 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were down $1,491 at $22,552.

Coking coal prices in China tumbled to a seven-month low, weighed down by prospects of higher supply and sustained weakness in demand for the steelmaking raw material, while fresh hopes of economic stimulus supported iron ore.

The panamax index was up 83 points, or 4.4%, at a one-week high of 1,972 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, increased by $745 to $17,746.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he wants a possible deal on resuming Ukrainian grain exports from the Black Sea to be put in writing this week after a general agreement was reached last week.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia was ready to facilitate the exports but also wanted the remaining curbs on Russian grain exports to be removed.

The supramax index rose by 18 points to 2,057 points, its highest since July 13.

Source: Reuters

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