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Baltic index extends losses as vessel rates drag

The Baltic Exchange’s dry bulk sea freight index fell for a fifth straight session on Wednesday to its lowest in more than five months, as rates slipped across all vessel segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, dropped 161 points, or 6.2% – the most in two weeks – to its lowest since June 8 at 2,430 points.

The capesize index shed 319 points, or 9.4%, to its lowest since early June at 3,064.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell $2,653 to $25,406.

Easing congestion at Chinese ports and thin coal cargo flows out of the Pacific are weighing on capesizes, shipbroker Intermodal said in a weekly note dated Tuesday.

China’s iron ore futures dropped for a fourth straight session on Wednesday as portside inventory of the steelmaking ingredient swelled to the highest level in 31 months, partly due to collapsing demand in the world’s top steel producer.

The panamax index fell 200 points, or 7.5%, to a seven-month trough of 2,475.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which ferry 60,000-70,000 tonne coal or grain cargoes, decreased by $1,795 to $22,277.

The supramax index lost 3 points to 2,260.

Atlantic earnings across all vessel sizes are expected to remain at a premium to Pacific earnings in the short term, Intermodal said.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Kavya Guduru in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)

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