Tankers: VLCC Market Softens
Rates in the Middle East Gulf softened around 2.5 points to WS 97/97.5 for 270,000mt to China, with a run to Japan fixed at WS 96. Going west, 280,000mt to the US Gulf remains steady at WS 43/43.5, basis Cape/Cape. West Africa to China basis 260,000mt came under downward pressure, with last done here five points lower at WS 92.5. The US Gulf to Singapore/China went at $8.4/9.4 million, while Taiwan discharge was fixed at $9.0 million.
West Africa again saw increased tonnage availability. Consequently, rates eased around 10 points to WS 115 for 130,000mt to UK-Cont. The Black Sea/Mediterranean rates have been hovering in the low/mid WS 160s for 135,000mt, with South Korea at $4.6 million.
Rates for 80,000mt from Ceyhan sit at around WS 190. Black Sea was fixed at WS 202.5, however, the vessel was open in the Black Sea, which, saves the costs of the Turkish straits and its delays northbound. Tight tonnage availability in the Baltic saw rates for 100,000mt gain over 35 points to WS 145. 80,000mt cross North Sea rates firmed almost 45 points to around WS 177, with Exxon paying WS 197.5, but for loading at Liverpool Bay. In the Caribbean, rates fell early in the week to below WS 115, before recovering to around WS135. This level was fixed by Valero on 70,000mt for mid-December Caribbs/US Gulf.
It was another encouraging week for Owners, who saw rates for 75,000mt Middle East Gulf/Japan climb about 30 points to WS 187.5. 55,000mt paying low WS 180s, up almost 35 points from last week.
Another busy week on MR’s from the Continent saw the market gain 12.5 points to WS 200 for 37,000mt Continent/USAC. The 38,000mt backhaul trade from the US Gulf enjoyed another positive week, gaining 30 points to WS 205 region.
Source: The Baltic Briefing