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Baltic Dry Index posts eighth straight rise

London: Despite many analysts and brokers claiming that the Chinese Holidays would have a negative impact on the BDI (Baltic Dry Index), it managed yesterday to post yet another rise, the eighth in a row, writes Hellenic Shipping News. It ended the session at 1036 points, up by another 22 points against the previous day. But this time around, it's the smaller types of vessels that were responsible for the Index's rise.

Up until the beginning of the week, larger types of vessels, the capesize ones, also considered as a benchmark for the market, were the leaders in terms of dragging the BDI up. But from the middle of the week, it was primarily the Panamax sector that posted rises. The Capesize Index was down 34 points yesterday at 1972, but the Panamax Index posted yet another increase at 86 points and 719 in total. Smaller increases of 15 and 5 points respectively were seen in the Supramax and the Handysize sectors.

Nevertheless, cargo activity is still low, due to Holidays in the Far East, but this hasn't managed to restrain the market's rise. According to Fearnley's mid-week report, rates for capsizes increased during the last week, with time charters moving up from a daily average of $15,000 to $18,000. "The tonnage situation is still tight in the Atlantic and Far East ships are again looking to Brazil to find employment. The rate gap between Atlantic r/v and Far East r/v is increasing and now stands at $18,500 and $14,000 respectively. Vale has taken a break in their Brazil/China fixing, obviously finding the present rates of $17,000 on the high side" said Fearnleys.

As for the panamax market, the broker commented that more cargoes have been seen from the Atlantic to the Far East and with owners "hesitating to visit the terrible Pacific market, levels increased to $11/12,000. Atlantic rounds are at around $5-6000 daily. The Pacific rounds are still at $2/3000 level and 4-6 months are paying around $6500/7000. For trips back to the Atlantic vessels fixed in the region of $1600".  [30/01/09]

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