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Baltic index gains on higher capesize rates, but posts weekly fall

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which rose on Friday as rates for capesize vessels improved, recorded its biggest weekly drop since early February.

The Baltic dry index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, rose 6 points, or 0.3%, to 2,178.

However, the index fell over 4.5% for the week, its first weekly loss in four and the biggest weekly decline since early February.

The panamax index was down 7 points, or 0.2%, at 2,827. It was down about 5% for the week.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,00 tonnes, fell $56 to $25,447.

The capesize index rose 63 points, or 2.8%, to 2,293.

However, the index also notched its first weekly decline in four.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as coal and steel-making ingredient iron ore, rose $524 to $19,014.

The supramax index fell 38 points to 1,983.

“The current strength of both the freight and the sale and purchase market inevitably leads to questions as to how long it will last…fundamentally the longer-term trends in the dry bulk market are not ones which support a prolonged upturn,” BIMCO’s chief shipping analyst, Peter Sand, said in a note.

The Suez Canal stepped up efforts to free a stuck container ship and end a blockage that has sent shipping rates for fuel tankers soaring and disrupted global supply chains.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Anjishnu Mondal in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)

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