October 10, 2019 / 2:12 PM / 4 months ago

Baltic index hits two-week high as vessel activity picks up

Oct 10 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, hit a two-week high on Thursday, as vessel rates across the board continued to strengthen.

* The Baltic index, which reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, gained 56 points, or 3%, to 1,929, highest since Sept. 26. The index is up for the fifth straight session.

* The capesize index jumped 111 points, or 3.5%, to 3,319, rising for a third straight session.

* The average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, increased by $1,049 to $26,647.

* Despite weather and maintenance disruptions, coal and iron ore flows in the Pacific are clearly up, which is the “brightest spot” for the capesize segment, shipbroker Fearnleys said in a note on Wednesday.

* The panamax index climbed for a fifth straight session, up 47 points, or 2.5%, at 1,899.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, rose $380 to $15,220.

* The supramax index rose 7 points to 1,211. (Reporting by Nakul Iyer in Bengaluru)

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