Baltic index rises to 3-month high on stronger capesize rates


The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, closed at its highest level in three months on Friday, supported by robust capesize rates.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, ended up 22 points or 2.07 percent at 1,086 points, a peak since Dec. 9.

The capesize index touched its highest level since Dec. 7, up 111 points, or 6.62 percent, at 1,789 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, rose $791 to $13,231, the highest since early December.

Freight rates for capesize vessels on key Asian routes are set to jump further next week on tight tonnage supply and buoyant cargo volumes, brokers said.

The panamax index fell marginally by nine points, or 0.74 percent, to 1,211 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, decreased $75 to $9,728.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index rose two points to 874 points, while the handysize index climbed four points to 495 points.

Source: Reuters 

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