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Baltic index marks first weekly gain in seven weeks

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index rose on Friday and registered its first weekly gain in seven, buoyed by improving rates for all vessel segments.

The Baltic dry index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, edged up 14 points, or 1.2%, at 1,148, a peak since Nov. 10. The index rose about 3% for the week.

The capesize index gained for a second consecutive session, up 5 points, or 0.4%, at 1,435, but was still down about 5% for the week.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore — a steelmaking raw material — and coal, rose $39 to $11,897.

Iron ore futures rose as shrinking steel inventories at Chinese mills encouraged traders of the steelmaking raw material to push prices higher.

The panamax index was up by 27 points, or 2%, at 1,353, which was the highest since Oct. 15.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, rose $246 to $12,176.

The supramax index rose by 15 points to 930, its highest since Nov. 3.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Bharat Gautam in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

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