VLCCs: Rates Start to Weaken
A general further weakening of rates was seen across this sector. In the Middle East 280,000mt to US Gulf via the Cape/Cape routing is assessed another point down at WS19.5. Meanwhile, 270,000mt to China is now rated five points lower than a week ago at just below WS35. In the Atlantic, rates for 260,000mt West Africa to China fell three points again to WS35 level although overnight reports detail a 2016 built vessel on subjects to Petroineos at WS33. For voyages of 270,000mt US Gulf to China, the market is now being rated at just below $4.5m – another $200k drop from last week.
In the 135,000mt Black Sea/Med market we saw rates continue to hover around the WS58-59 level, while for 130,000mt Nigeria/UK Continent the market remained static at the WS38 mark. In the Middle East, the market for 140,000mt Basrah/Med voyages rose about a point to WS12-13 level. However, a vessel was put on subjects yesterday at WS21 for a trip to the US Gulf and there are two cargoes for Mediterranean discharge being worked at the moment which should lead to a more detectable firming market.
Rates for 80,000mt Ceyhan/Lavera were steady at around the WS70 level. In Northern Europe rates for voyages of 80,000mt cross-North Sea remained flat at WS80, while 100,000mt Baltic/UK-Continent saw an improvement of about four points to WS62.5-65 region. On the other side of the Atlantic, owners had a miserable week with rates for 70,000mt Carib to US Gulf falling 8 points to low WS80s. In the 70,000mt US Gulf to UK Continent market rates tumbled 10 points earlier in the week and remain there, for now, at WS65.
In the Middle East Gulf/Japan trade it has been an uneventful week with rates largely unchanged. The market for 75,000mt is still hovering in the low WS80s. On the LR1s, rates have nudged up around four / five points to sit now at close to WS82.5. Healthy amounts of enquiry in the MR market saw rates for 35,000mt AG/East Africa gaining almost 10 points to WS175 region. In the Atlantic trade, the start of the week saw rates initially maintained at WS 110. However, with plenty of tonnage available, the market slipped to WS 105 level with lower reportedly done on tonnage with last cargo palm oil. The backhaul trade of 38,000mt from US Gulf to UK/Continent saw rates edge up around three points to WS 80 level, while the 38,000mt US Gulf to Brazil run is now at WS112.5 level representing a small gain of 3.5 points. In the 30,000mt cross-Mediterranean trade, owners enjoyed a better week with the market firming 17.5 points to WS102.5 region.
Source: The Baltic Briefing