Asia Dry Bulk-Capesize could nudge higher on miner charters
By Keith Wallis
SINGAPORE Oct 23 (Reuters) - Rates for capesize bulk carriers on key Asian routes could hold steady or climb higher after prices jumped earlier this week on renewed chartering activity by operators including Vale and Fortescue Metals Group, brokers said.
The surge in charter volumes added about $2 per tonne to capesize rates from Australia to China and $3 per tonne for a voyage from Brazil to China, leading the Baltic capesize index to climb nearly 60 percent in a week.
But capesize freight rates are still below the levels seen last year when the dry bulk sector entered the traditionally strong fourth quarter.
"The capesize market is a bit more exciting this week. The rally caught people by surprise. And I wouldn't be surprised if it nudges up," said a Singapore-based capesize broker on Thursday.
"But rates are still below where fourth quarter prices should be," he added.
Rates for the Western Australia-China route rose to $9 per tonne on Wednesday, up from $7.25 per tonne a week earlier. But they were slightly higher at 9.45 per tonne a year ago.
Freight rates for the Brazil-China route climbed to $20.25 per tonne on Wednesday, an increase of more than $3 per tonne compared with $17.14 per tonne a week ago.
Rates for a Brazil-China voyage were around $23.90 per tonne a year ago. Continuación...