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Baltic index dips as weaker rates for larger vessels weigh

Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index , which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, eased on Monday pressured by declines in capesize and panamax vessel rates.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, fell 61 points, or 1.9%, to 3,224.

The capesize index dropped 161 points, or about 4.6%, to a more than three-week low of 3,349.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes of coal and steel-making ingredient iron ore, were down $1,333 at $27,773.

According to Mysteel consultancy, steel output at some producers in China was restricted due to the Communist Party’s 100th anniversary and environment-related policies, sending down utilisation rates of blast furnaces at 247 mills across the country to 81.01% as of July 2 from a week earlier.

The panamax index dipped 28 points, or 0.7%, to 4,241.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,00 tonnes, declined $252 to $38,170.

The supramax index was flat at 2,935 points.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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