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Baltic dry bulk index down as smaller vessel rates retreat

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, slipped on Wednesday as a dip in panamax and supramax vessels overshadowed an uptick in the larger capesize segment.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, was down 18 points, or about 0.8%, at 2,186 points, its lowest in more than two months.

The capesize index rose for the first time since June 23, gaining 48 points, or over 2.2%, to 2,200 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were up $399 at $18,248.

Singapore iron ore futures retreated after a two-day rally, while the Dalian market trimmed gains after Chinese President Xi Jinping said the country should stick to its “effective” pandemic management strategy.

The panamax index shed 56 points, or almost 2.2%, to 2,510 points, its lowest in more than four months.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, decreased $503 to $22,589.

Major exporter Ukraine saw 36.5% lower shipments of grains like wheat and corn in June 1-29 from the year-ago period, its agriculture ministry said, following Russia’s invasion on Feb. 24.

The supramax index fell 57 points to 2,359 points.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Deep Vakil in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath)

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