Dry Bulk Market: Capesize Class is Gradually Recovering
Both the overall index and timecharter average (5TC) gradually recovered back to the level last seen at the end of October, with BCI and 5TC posting at 4594 and $38,096 by the end of the week. Tonnage appeared tight in both basins. In the Atlantic, gossip was limited – especially for the transatlantic trade – but some strong fronthaul fixtures were reported in the second half of the week. The Atlantic routes remained in positive territory throughout the week. A premium was demanded on early arrival vessels for C3 the Brazil to Qingdao run, as well as the C5 the west Australia to Qingdao run. C3 closed the week at $29.14 with the relevant C14 time charter route reflecting at the level of $30,000. C5 was marked at $13.036 on Friday with fixtures reportedly done at the same level. The relevant C10 transpacific round voyage posted at $36,167 – a marginal improvement compared with $34,787 when the week started.
The Panamax market witnessed further rises this week with the Atlantic charting significant gains straight from the get-go. This eventually fed into the Asia market midweek as fresh demand here as well only added to improvement in rates across the board. The Atlantic saw both a mineral and grain led charge, pitted against a tight tonnage count from the Continent and Mediterranean positions. A scrubber fitted 81,000-dwt agreeing $38,500 for a NC South America round. In the background came support further south from EC South America with solid levels of demand. Asia began the week with somewhat of a two-tier looking market. The south was led by sound demand ex Indonesia and support from the Atlantic, but the North was looking less well supported. However, by midweek the NoPac, US Gulf and Australia markets rallied. The resultant rates picked up and a 82,000-dwt delivery Korea fixing $23,500 for an Australian round trip.
A stronger week across the board with increased activity from some key areas, such as the US Gulf and South East Asia. This led to a tightening of prompt tonnage availability. Period activity was seen and a 63,000-dwt open US Gulf was fixed for minimum three to about five months trading redelivery Atlantic at $35,500. Elsewhere, a 58,000-dwt open Kuwait was fixed for about one year at $22,000. In the Atlantic, demand was seen from the US Gulf, a 55,000-dwt fixing in the upper $40,000s for a trip to Japan. From the Mediterranean, a 56,000-dwt was fixed from the East Mediterranean for a trip to the US Gulf at close to $30,000. In Asia, more cargo was seen from Indonesia. A 63,000-dwt open Port Kelang fixing a trip via Indonesia redelivery China at $29,000. Whilst for Pacific rounds a 57,000-dwt open South China was heard fixed for an Australian round in the mid $20,000s.
A story of two halves with many saying it was a slow start. As the week progressed demand in Asia increased and sentiment was healthier from the Continent. Limited period activity surfaced, but a 34,000-dwt open in the Mediterranean was fixed for one year at $20,000. In the Atlantic, a 37,000-dwt was heard fixed from Klaipeda with scrap to the East Mediterranean in the $40,000s. Whilst from East Coast South America, a 35,000-dwt was heard fixed delivery Recalada trip to Chile at $50,000. Elsewhere, from the US Gulf, a 37,000-dwt fixed a petcoke run from Houston to Denmark at $28,000. From Asia, a 37,000-dwt open North China early December trip via Japan to Thailand in the low $20,000s. Similar rates were also being discussed for handysized vessels open South East Asia for Australian round voyages.
Source: The Baltic Briefing