Baltic Index Marks First Gain of 2014
Jan 15 (Reuters) – The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Wednesday, marking its first gain this year, driven by higher capesize rates.
* The overall index, which factors in the average daily earnings of capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize dry bulk transport vessels, rose 4 points or 0.29 percent to 1,374 points.
* The Baltic’s capesize index rose 30 points or 1.64 percent to 1,862 points after having fallen about 54 percent this year.
* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were up $280 to $13,168. The increase in capesize rates has come after consecutive drops in all the last nine sessions this year.
* The panamax index slipped 8 points or 0.51 percent to 1,572 points.
* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry 60,000 to 70,000-tonne cargoes of coal or grains, were down $54 to $12,534 on Wednesday.
* Shipping association BIMCO said last week that it expects dry bulk demand to grow at 4.5 to 6 percent, driven forward by the major bulk trades of iron ore, steam coal and coking coal, with grain in a supporting role.
“China remains in the driving seat, a scenario that will benefit the larger ships more than the smaller ones,” BIMCO’s chief shipping analyst Peter Sand had said. (Reporting by Koustav Samanta in Bangalore, editing by William Hardy)
(c) 2014 Thomson Reuters, All Rights Reserved
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