Baltic Dry Index Soars Past 600 Points

ReutersApril 15 (Reuters) – The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Friday, supported primarily on improved demand for capesize vessels.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, went up 38 points, or 6.37 percent to 635 points.

The capesize index rose 118 points, or 14.2 percent, to 949 points. The index has climbed about 45 percent over the last week.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, jumped $892 to $7,076.

Continued healthy volumes in the Atlantic market, primarily due to fresh iron ore activity from Brazil, have been supportive of the higher capesize rates, ship brokerage firm Clarksons Platou said in its note on Friday.

The panamax index was up 27 points, or 3.86 percent, at 727 points.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, rose $219 to $5,796 on Thursday.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index rose 11 points to 525 points, and the handysize index was up 12 points at 321 points. (Reporting by Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru)

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