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Baltic index dips as vessel demand slows ahead of Chinese holiday

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index slipped for the second straight day on Tuesday as demand across vessel segments fell ahead of a week-long holiday in China beginning Thursday.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, fell 9 points, or 0.8 percent, to 1,114 points.

The capesize index fell for the first time in six sessions, losing 31 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,793 points.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell $243 to $14,075.

Steel and iron ore futures in China edged higher on Tuesday, but gains were capped as trading activity winds down before the Lunar Year break.

The panamax index was down for the 12th straight session, shedding nine points, or 0.73 percent, to 1,228 points, a fresh low since Sept. 2017.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, were down $69 to $9,856.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index fell two points to 817 points, while the handysize index fell two points to 518 points.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Vijaykumar Vedala in Bengaluru)

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